I’ve always been a perfectionist. I’ve spent the last, hmmm, 16 years working on a novel that is still going nowhere. I talk about board games that I still haven’t worked out the rules for. I have magazines to launch, photo essays to take, coffee table books to create, clothing lines for babies to sell, albums to record, people to promote, movies to make, screenplays to write… I’ve thought about launching a thousand ships, but never worked out the details, never hoisted the sails or hired a scurvy crew. Well, 10m, and to a greater extent There Is No Box, is about
fucking forgetting the details. It’s about creating in beta. It’s about exposing vulnerabilities before your work is bulletproof.
Interesting things happen when you ask an artist to do something quickly. They either dive in or they attack you! I found it amazing that two of my closest friends despised my approach, or at least told me how they really felt about my little endeavour:
This is the most uninspiring thing I have ever done in my entire life.
That was my favourite piece of feedback. It stemmed from the frustration of limitation: 10 minutes is an extremely short period of time when you get lost in your work. And I’m sure that most people cheated just a bit (except for Evan, who I know completed his Meerschweinchen in exactly 10 minutes). But the point was to create something. The point was to remove the biggest excuse/barrier to creation: no time. IT HAS TO TAKE 10 MINUTES OR LESS.
Others hated the theme, or ignored it completely. Or they reinterpreted it. I really couldn’t care less. The theme was meant to be a starting point, not a roadblock. IT HAS TO RELATE TO (ONE OF) THE FIRST 10 WORDS IN THE DICTIONARY UNDER THE LETTER M.
Um, I was a little confused with the theme. First, I forgot about it when I was doing the work. Second, after giving things some names I noticed that the theme was 10 Ms. Seems to me that a theme makes doing something in 10 minutes a lot harder and a bit of a reason to put it off if you don’t have an idea right off.
You might be better off creating themes out of the material you get. Maybe even allow contributors or users to construct pages/themes out of available material. Someone might be able to do a page in 10 min!
The third thing, and perhaps the most important thing, is that IT HAS TO BE DIGITIZABLE. Otherwise there’s no way to publish it online. But there are ways to be creative about this too. If you created a new 10 minutes tap dance, you could always tape it and send me the video.
Anyway, go check out the inaccurately named yet appropriately titled magasin rapide, and let me know what you think. The speed and variety shocked me, as did the talent and quality. I am proud to have started this mess, and will continue to foster it. Please leave comments, good or bad, with your reactions, suggestions, criticisms and accolades.
By the way, I will continue to solicit and accept entries for the next issue of 10m. As soon as I get ten articles of art, I will launch volume01 issue02.