A Mistake Artists Can Make Posting Online

“The point is the doing of them rather than the accomplishments.”
-Bruce Lee

 Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the rewards that come with hard work…and we forget that the hard work itself was reward.  Bam!  I didn’t even make you work hard to read that tip.  Let’s elaborate.

I learn a new technique.  I post it online.  It gets very little response.  I get upset because it’s a cool trick that deserves recognition.  “What’s the point of posting if noone recognizes it.”  Wait…you still learned that trick and you love it.  Stop right there.  

When did this become the focus?

You had a golden moment of training - a discovery, an advancement within yourself that will stay forever.  Did you just lose that feeling?  Why ruin that feeling with needing others to validate your efforts?  Didn't you just level up an ability FOREVER? Whaaat!

If you share something, you are a mirror.  Others see things according to how your work triggers their worldview and perspective.  You don't usually get to control their story and how they integrate it with your work.  So don't base your value on it.

I remember the story about a person that lost a loved one.  This person messaged me to thank me because she was able to learn the nunchaku and carry on his memory through that training.  From a numbers standpoint, she only liked the video once.  One like.   Imagine if that was the only like my video received?  What if I wasted time being frustrated about the "one like" response, not realizing the quality of that one number.  Think about it.  You never know the stories behind the people, you only know the numbers.  Making it a numbers game erases the stories.  These stories are probably what you are looking for, more than the numbers.  

"I mean, I think I'm cool but only 3 people told me that RIDICULOUSLY fiery wings are cool.  So maybe it's not cool."

If you are doing it because you're passionate about it, focus on what you can create and be okay with how things fall as they may.  

Your creation, that's great...  
You creatING, that is the real masterpiece.  

It is art unfolding through time.  Keep creating, keep being awesome.  Your past efforts will be turned into badges. Appreciate them, but try not to fall in love with them too much, try not to let it blind you from seeing all the masterpieces waiting for you in the future.  Stay the path and keep the power of artistry in your hands.  

As you create, the reward is in the creating.  Stay with that.

  • Like this post?  Be sure to share, like and comment or I won't believe it was worth writing it.  Joking...joking... 😉  Well... I mean, if you did share it, I'd appreciate it.  Oh the irony! hahaha
  • Also, I am aware that if you make art your business, engaging an audience is more of a requirement.  But I am also suggesting that you will appreciate the process a whole lot more if you only focus on improving the things you can control...  
    Good approach: Make great art.  Know your value.  Connect with the right people that resonate or share your vision.  Repeat.  Pow!
    Bad approach:  Make great art.  Convince people your art is valuable.  Wait for their response.  Decide your value.  Repeat.
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Ken Hill

Owner of Flowtricks. I love spinning!


  1. I love how spinning makes me feel… ALIVE! That sensation I get when I pick up a new tool whose balance I haven’t tested yet… It’s like getting a glimpse of the quantum wave function of awesome spins and epic fumbles just waiting to be had. I’ve always focused on these over how pretty it looks to others. It is through your videos that I even gave a thought to how others may see this tactile art. Total Epiphany. It brought balance to my flow. Now I see it as, “hey come and revel in this subjective experience with me.” That’s you, Ken; reaching out through cyberspace to touch others with your art. Thank you.

    The obsession with likes is one of the things I loathe about social media in general. Sometimes I envy those dial-up days where instant messengers and chat rooms encouraged group engagement… then I remember that piercing sound that I’d have to leave the room for and the longing for yesteryear fades lol.

    1. As a martial arts school owner for 29 years I understand where you are coming from. As instructors we have ups and downs feeling valued, feeling used, sometimes frustrated and other times pleased with the progress of our students. In the end we touch people in ways we never even realize. For me it can be as small as complimenting a student on a technique that gives them the confidence to forge ahead. Like the note you received from the woman wanting to feel connected to her loved one, that is worth all the time and energy as instructors we put into our art, at least it is for me. The occasional thank you card I receive from a parent telling me what a huge positive influence I’ve had on their child gives me the desire to just keep on doing the art! Thank you for your thoughts.

      1. So true and wonderful thoughts! I have been coming across friends that are frustrated because they’ve been working hard and it wasn’t recognized. And I think it is so good to encourage and help one another. It can be very inspiring… but at the same time, I just wanted to remind people that the reward still happened no matter how others received it! 🙂

  2. Sometimes it’s not about recognition for ones work it’s about progressing in ones work, its unfortunate that so many people choose to not interact with those who share because it leaves the one who shared questioning themselves because let’s face it, if a entire group chooses to ignore you it will make you feel like you don’t belong or aren’t good enough. I know that’s what I’ve been struggling with. I reached the decision to push past those feelings and just keep working and I try and acknowledge what others share and encourage their efforts. We all hit various peaks and valleys where support and encouragement can give amazing boosts to morale or continued motivation to go to a new level. I really like this post and totally agree that it’s the art that matters and not the likes but I wanted to add a few of my thoughts to the topic

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