The other day, I randomly started writing a fan letter to my favorite film director, Wes Anderson. (You know, what fun, extroverted college kids do with their free time.) From eighth to twelfth grade, I revered him as an unparalleled genius without thinking very critically about his work. I loved the visual aesthetic, quirkiness, and humor of the films endlessly, blind to what I now recognize as flawed stories lacking diversity in more ways than one. Nevertheless, I still admire a lot about his films and wanted to know if he has a unique process. This is what inspired my compulsion to write him a letter full of semi-artistic, semi-intellectual, semi-pretentious questions. It was only when I looked back at some of these questions that I realized I wanted to ask these questions to everyone who has ever thought of themselves as an artist or creator (which, if I'm not mistaken, is pretty much everyone.)
Here are 5 questions I have of anyone who has ever worked to create art, for either themselves or for others:
1. How do you know whether you’re generating a meaningful idea or merely indulging in something self serving? Is it possible that the latter option is just as meaningful?
2. What specific qualities do you look for in the people you work with?
*Come to think of it, Wes Anderson's answer to this is probably just "Bill Murray."
3. Did you ever feel different or misunderstood growing up? If so, how did this shape you or manifest in your work as a creator?
4. What is your philosophy on beauty? What, if anything, is profoundly beautiful to you?
5. What do you care about putting into the world? By putting it into the world, what is your goal? (If you have one.)
I may not ever get answers to these questions from Wes or anyone else, but I hope anyone who feels inclined can search themselves for their own unique answers. I'll certainly try to.