79 - Names and other things we call ourselves

Hello and welcome to the 79th episode of The Spark & The Art creativity podcast. Thank you for subscribing to our weekly podcast, where we alternate between interviews with creative folks from all different career levels and insight and inspiration episodes. All with the intention you’ll get the inspiration you need to get your creative projects started and, more importantly, finished.

I’m your host Tucker and this week is insight and inspiration and we’re going to talk about the things we call ourselves.

Actually my name is Sean Harley but everyone calls me Tucker. When people ask why everyone calls me Tucker I say “Because I always say ‘My name is Sean Harley but everyone calls me Tucker.’ and then they do.” That’s the short smartassy answer but the truth is I’ve always felt something weird about my name Sean. It’s not that I don’t like it. I love it. It’s my name. My family calls me Sean some very very long time friends call me Sean. But everyone else calls me Tucker. It may be because I tell them too or it may because the name suits me who knows. The fact of the matter is I started as one and became the other but the other still exists. Okay that last sentence was a bit odd sorry. 

Names are a theme on the podcast too mostly because of my own personal fascination with them. Some of my guests have, like me, created their own nicknames. Some of my guests have people with the same name who do the same job like author Sean Williams there are a couple authors with that name. Author David B. Goldstein found the need to include the B. in his name to differentiate himself but a quick internet search reveals his not the only David B. Goldstein either. 

What does all this name stuff have to do with anything? First of all your name was probably given to you before you even left the warmth of your mother. Imagine if you were given a job title at the same time. “Hi this is my daughter Rebecca barista and my son Jeffery Marketing Manager.” What if you were given a creative a creative interest too? “Hi my name is Dillon Painter and this is my twin brother Jacob songwriter.” Would you have to be a marketing manager or songwriter? Some would try because that’s what they were told and some would excel and some would hate it. 

Again, Tucker, where is all this going? 

What do people tell you you are? "You are such a good artist you should draw comics.” “You are a born dancer.” “You sing way better than anyone on the radio you mustn’t waste that talent.” That’s all well and good if you want to be a singer, dancer or comics artist. It’s like the tall guy everyone expects to be good at basketball. Just because you have the talent for it and other people have labelled you as it doesn’t mean you are that thing. You get to decide what you are what your title is what you’re interested in and what you want to do. 

Don’t get me wrong some folks should listen to that encouragement from their friends, family, teachers or mentors to embrace their talent and give it a proper go to develop it. I’m not talking to those people who don’t quite recognize what they have yet. I’m talking to those who know that they write well but want to be a dancer. I’m talking to the person who can decorate a cake so marvellously each new dessert is a work of art but wants to be a writer. “But you decorate cakes so wonderfully honey anyone would pay top dollar for your skills who sells novels these days anyways?” The opposite is true too somewhere out there is a writer that can spill prose onto the page it doesn’t even seem like work but wants desperately to pipe buttercream for wedding cakes and is having trouble getting their skills to Pretty Good.

I’m talking to those folks and I’m telling them that they get to decide what they do. I’m telling those folks that they choose who they are not someone else. 

“Hi, I’m a Cake Artist but everyone calls me novelist."

Here’s where you get to do some thinking

  • Are you doing what you do because someone else suggested you’d be good at it? 
  • Do you love it?
  • What have you been putting off trying because you are already a _________?

Do you know someone who isn’t being true to what they should be doing? I’d love it if you could share this episode with them maybe they’ll get that spark they need to really start on their passion. The easiest way to share is to email them the url TheSparkAndTheArt.com/79 and don’t email it if you don’t want to maybe text message or Facebook post is easier. I just spent the last 6 1/2 minutes or so telling to live your own life don’t let me tell you how to share this with your friends. But let me tell you to share it with your friends because that would help the show. 

You know what else would help the show? If you could visit TheSparkAndTheArt.com/itunes and leave an honest rating and review. 

If you want to tell me I’m awesome or politely tell me that you didn’t agree with me I’d love to hear it via twitter @SparkArtPodcast or leave comment in the form of a song at my toll-free number 1-877-966-4886. 

Thanks for listing and remember: you won’t get the art without the work and you won’t do the work without the spark.