Being an artist in 2019 is more complex than it’s ever been. I’ve been navigating this world of social media since I first created a Myspace music page back in….hm…2007? YIKES. Twelve years of having to keep up with the latest socials. Whose in your Top 8? What song is on your page? How many photos did I get tagged in on Facebook this weekend? How many plays did I get on my Vine? Anyone remember Viddy? How many Retweets did I get on Twitter, likes on Instagram? Views on my Snapchat? Add into this Spotify streams, Youtube plays, and iTunes downloads…and you’ll feel like you’re on overdrive. Let’s just be real here…it’s an extreme amount of keeping up with what feels like an alternate universe outside of everyday life.
As though having enough content to post isn’t pressure enough (which it is, I know you agree with me!) Now we have to be aware of whether or not our Instagram posts are thematic with our brand and appeal to our greater aesthetic. The list of objectives goes on and on and on…don’t forget to use the proper hashtags in order to gain sufficient reach.
These platforms will be forever changing in response to consumer demand. But as an artist…let’s take this a step further…
Why are artists, individuals who are admired for their ability to be transparent in their emotions,being forced to fit into these standards of perfection?
Now, I’m not talking about Instagram, although it does seem entirely forced and contrived these days. But, instead, I am speaking about artist’s content on Youtube. Every Youtube cover or performance video is prerecorded and filmed with perfect lighting. I myself have taken significant amount of time in between posting videos, because there is this fear surrounding sharing something that is subpar. I’m not sure about you, but I like artists for their imperfections, for their personality shining through when they make a mistake, their hair being out of place, or their voice getting a little raspy. It makes them human.
Didn’t we all adore Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s performance of Shallow on the Oscars because it felt REAL, relatable, natural…RAW?!
Being an artist is simultaneous with being able to put yourself on display under vulnerable circumstances.
So here I am, second guessing every single thing I post out of the fear of “not getting it right.” So from this day forward, I am going to try and break this habit of overthinking and worrying about whether or not my content is up to the standards of perfection, and instead, share my story through a more realistic lens: imperfection.