“I’d like some fresh, clear, well seasoned perspective…”
“Can you suggest a good wine to go with that?” (I love Ratatouille!)
I think that Anton Ego from Ratatouille did a very good job of summing up the role of critics:
In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to our judgment. We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and to read. But the bitter truth we critics must face, is that in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is probably more meaningful than our criticism designating it so.
I’ve just been exploring the work of Julia Nunes. I recently discovered her when someone linked a video of hers on twitter and having nothing better to do (and always wanting new music to listen to) I checked it out. The song was “The Only Exception” by Paramore and Julia does a lovely job of covering it with a ukulele, doing her own harmonies and everything.
It’s a very intimate video (for those of you that can’t see it). She sits very close to the camera, strums her uke and puts some very real feeling into it. As I said, it’s quite lovely…
There seemed to be a bit of a hullabaloo in the comment section between a couple of commenters and my curiosity got the better of me. (Never a good idea.) I looked back a couple of pages to find the initial comment that caused such a reaction: “u sound like a f***ing old guy”
As you can imagine, fans jumped to Julia’s defense and a comment battle began… (It even got to the point where the original “critic”, shall we generously call them, claimed that they were from some hugely popular band that was not to be named. /eyeroll) The whole thing is really ridiculous and as someone that hopes someday to have my creative work laid bare for all to see, I find this kind of thing… Well, sad, I guess. What is it about the creative process that so invites people to be so needlessly hostile? Whatever happened to tact? Where does the drive to voice such a negative opinion come from? And even in cases when what you’re saying might be true, what point is there at all criticizing someone for something that they have absolutely no control over?
Do you have such a bloated sense of self-importance that you feel that the world must know your opinions? (Says the blogger with the bloated sense of self-importance and opinions that she must share! The irony of me saying that is not lost on me, thank you!)
“RAWR!!” we cry, “I DON’T LIKE THIS!! HEAR ME!!! BLAAAAAAAAAAHRRBBB!!”
When we (and I am big time included in that “we”) sniff our noses in disdain toward someone’s creative ventures, most of the time they’re putting out something far superior to anything we ourselves could ever hope to accomplish. Why do we feel the need to be so hateful?
And don’t get me wrong. There is a time and a place for criticism and there is a right and a wrong way to criticize. Constructive criticism (that helps you grow and improve in your craft) will always be needed. But what in the world is the purpose of the “nanny nanny boo boo” comment like “you suck”?
I just don’t get it…