Monday, 17 March 2014

Does Pinterest Help or Hinder Our Creativity?

Everybody and their mother is on Pinterest (or at least it seems like it!) - Pinterest has seemed to spur this huge movement towards handmade and a "return to our roots" when it comes to home decor/cooking/cleaning/etc. I am baffled by some of the little gems that people find on Pinterest, and the tips and tricks that have helped them clean burnt milk off their ceramic stove top....BUT, as someone who creates for a living, does Pinterest inspire new ideas, or hinder the creative process?

As I may have told some of you before, I do not like Pinterest in general. Yes, I have a few items listed, but that was because I felt like that is what I was "supposed" to do. Mainly I don't like Pinterest because, frankly, I'm afraid of my brain being flooded with beautiful pieces of furniture that are not my own - this means that the next time I do a piece I will think about how nice this cabinet looked, or that cabinet, and subconsciously I end up with the exact same finished product! Maybe that sounds completely bizarre, but it's true!

With so many people picking up a paint brush these days, I think it is essential to remain true to myself and my own style. Are my pieces completely unique in every way? NO! Sure, I do similar finishes, and yes I get inspired by how people do different techniques, but I will not scour page after page of painted buffets looking for an idea for my next piece.

When I go on Pinterest I often see similar pins because a certain image has been pinned over and over. So, if half the country makes the same "DIY wreath" is it really that unique? I know there are many awesome ideas on there, it is definitely not an evil thing, I am just trying to argue my point from the perspective of people who work very hard to create certain designs/pieces, just to have it replicated a billion times over.

That's a whole other point, but so often people re-pin without giving credit to the original creator and that's when a crazy-good unique piece becomes a mainstream Pinterest poster-child.

In short, I think Pinterest is an awesome tool for a DIY-er who is looking for cool projects to do around the house. For me as an artisan? I think it hampers my ability to think freely using my own ideas and my own ideals for each piece. If I know I want to use technique "abc" on a new piece, but I am not sure how to totally do technique "abc" then I have zero problems going on Pinterest or Google to clarify one aspect of my project - so used as a tool instead of a crutch, I think its great!

I should also say I am NOT saying I am better than any artisans that perhaps really enjoy Pinterest, seriously I'm not! Purely my own thoughts on the subject for my "art". 

For more info on how to practice "ethical pinning" in order to give credit where credit is due, please see Oh My Handmade's website

Thanks for reading!

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