This seems a little self evident but it is often forgotten. The homogenising effects of dominant styles or technologies can cripple creativity. We need to be vigilant.
Way back in the deep dark past there were more than one form of operating system for PCs. DR-DOS was one. MS-DOS became the dominant form because of the size of Microsoft in the market. Similarly VHS crushed Betamax as a video format in the home. Mills and Boon have their own formula for writing romantic novels. All other types tend to not be as successful.
Yet the disruptors, the paradigm shifters know these ways of doing things and then do them differently. Uber, PayPal, Stripe spring to mind. For examples more like our podcasting medium we can think of radio shows that changed the way things have been done, forever. In the comedy sphere we have The Goon Show. To be fair, it took a genius suffering from bipolar disorder to achieve this, Spike Milligan. Monty Python did the same thing on television and film. So to The Goodies. A little known program on radio, The Burkiss Way continued The Goon Show paradigm.
The point I’m attempting to make, through a journey into my misspent youth, is that we need to see our feeds as a possibility for greatness.
All of the above quoted entertainment based examples were built upon “failures”. But these failures were a stepping stone to greatness. Knowing the medium is critical before you can bring a vision. As I’ve stated elsewhere, Only the ordained can be truly heretical.
Knowing the way others create their shows, the really great shows allows us to disrupt the medium and create a new way of seeing both the medium and the world.
Knowing how to tell a story, and I’ve discussed that here, here, here and here, allows you and I, for that matter, to explore the technique and try new ideas. “But I just interview people.”, I hear you say. Just because the rest of the world interviews in a given way, why should you?
There may be very good reasons to follow the established ways of doing things but do not let that stop you experimenting. I keep a separate feed for just such experiments. They are not radical, yet but they are part of the experimental process. You can see the few pieces I’ve created over at Sound Collages. The process continues, almost permanently, in the back of my mind. And this might be a clue.
What we focus upon comes to mind more often. You just bought a new car and all you see are how many there are on your model and colour out there on the road. Think of an old friend you haven’t heard from in years and a friend request will pop up on social media. Focus upon a thing and it appears.
The quality of your experiments will improve over time. You own your feed, play with it, if you want. If you don’t, then understand why you are producing the style of show you are. More on show styles here, here and here.
- Your feed is yours to play with
- Experiment and have fun
- Stay with what you’re doing but know why