You know those videos on YouTube that show “minimalist,” desk setups, or workstations, with a grand total of four items perfectly spaced. Each item is new, perfect, trending, and guaranteed to trigger a cascade of new buying? Ya, I figured you did. They are rampant. “My ultimate minimalist setup,” or my “dream desk setup.” I find these rather odd. But that’s me. (Same for the perverse world of EDC.)
I find them odd because they aren’t about the desk setup. These films are about YOU buying what THE FILMMAKER gets paid for YOU buying. I also think they are odd because of all the creative people I know, the high-level ones anyway, NOBODY has a desk like that. Same for art studios. I know a few art studios that are organized, but never to THAT degree. Why? Because the artist is actually USING the studio. And art is messy. We learn that in grade school. I’ve still got glue in my hair, and yes, I ate as much of it as possible. So filling.
A few that stand out to me were the Francis Bacon studio. Good grief, look at that place. How about Peter Beard at work? (This is a great article by the way.) I am in NO WAY putting myself remotely near the level of either of these folks but after seeing one too many thumbnails for the modern “creative” desktop I couldn’t stand it anymore. I suddenly wondered, “What does my studio look like,” and why does it matter?” Truth is, it doesn’t but I thought maybe someone might find this interesting.
I’m fortunate. I have a job that keeps me more than busy. And I guess I have a second job if you throw in AG23. And my outside work life is just as active. Probably why I’m sitting here dog tired at the moment. Alas, no complaints. But the point is I don’t have time to pretend, nor do I want to. I just want to work, to make and to experience a life of positive, interesting endeavor. My current life requires what you see here. Yes, I put these items in order so you might be able to determine what is what. Normally, it’s in a big pile. No, I’m not joking.
What’s my point? Doesn’t matter. Whatever your desk is it is. I’m not selling you on my lifestyle or my style, just cracking a door and letting a little light in. The key is to create a space that allows for exertion. Creative, focused exertion. I think the same could be said for my car or your car. It’s just metal and plastic, it’s where you go that’s important. So if your desk isn’t “perfect,” it’s okay.