The Creative Independent

Year End: On worldbuilding

The internet is an amazing space when it reminds us how vast and diverse the world is. Early dot-com websites reflected this notion of an “expanding space” in their company names, using words like “earth,” “globe,” “world,” “space,” or “system” to describe their growing networks. Our website contains the word “world” 950 times. In comparison, our galaxy contains 100+ billion planets and scientists believe that around 40 billion of these are earth like.

The word “world” is mentioned 956 out of 755802 total words in the TCI-verse.

On the eve of a new year, it may be important to check some numbers in order to reflect on what binds us together in this world. As musician Madalyn Merkey puts it, “I keep it very theoretical, like I just need to get my numbers right before I indulge in the environment that I’m creating”.

It’s a fact that programs love to count. Just like counting the stars in the sky or the grains of sand on a beach, let’s iterate through our microcosm, one word at a time. We could count how many times green [40] or blue [62] is mentioned across our website. Below is a tally of how many instances a particular worldbuilding word is mentioned throughout our 314 interviews. We will update this list on occasion with a current count and will leave a timestamp at the bottom for reference.

galaxy [1]

universe [34]

world [950]

earth [44]

globe [3]

water [129]

plant [62]

animal [69]

human [210]

system [168]

love [1074]

hate [570]

calm [19]

star [1531]

home [234]

community [226]

blue [62]

green [40]

play [1238]

friend [569]

work [4585]

life [1082]

death [101]

day [1266]

month [238]

year [1422]

Last updated: December 26, 2017

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Income inequality in the art world is exactly like the income inequality of the country. The art world is in the world. It can’t be better and it can’t be worse than the world. It’s in the actual world. It reflects it perfectly. It seems more extreme because it’s smaller and we actually know some of the people, but it’s really not dissimilar to the world at large.

I’m pretty set on promoting life-long education as the most important thing. Getting people to be curious, in this time when you can access almost every piece of information in the world, is the best possible thing to do to try to help all humans.

It is difficult when you’re doing everything on your own and you put something out into the world and it’s sort of like, ‘Is anybody hearing me?’

My idea is to get the realtime earthquake data of the world, the whole world, and transform the data to MIDI signals, to play the piano. So the piano, damaged by the tsunami, is now a device to express the vibrations of our planet.

Babe the pig knew he could communicate with sheep and he knew he could be a good herd pig but the world was like, ‘No, pigs don’t herd sheep.’

If you’re putting things into the world, you have a responsibility to think about who they affect. You’ll never fully know the depth and magnitude of whatever you’re making, and the effect it will have on the people who have to interact with it or will see it, but you have a responsibility to do the best you can.

I most enjoy building a small fictional world that is hyper-focused on small details, in which you can access everything important through one interaction, one conversation, one small interpersonal thing that’s gone wrong. It’s usually something very, very subtle. Just a minute of dialogue, a facial expression. Tiny moments of rupture.

I realized that the society is perhaps composed of a group of people who built their own worlds because they couldn’t blend in with the others.

I thought that if I could have some sort of stable center or a truth, then things can branch out from there, and I can create my own world or, perhaps, my own religion. In a way that’s what all artists do. I’m just being completely honest about it.

As opposed to how it’s used in the business world, the spreadsheet is actually a super flexible tool. It’s like an infinite notepad where you can link cells to subsequent sheets and zoom in and out infinitely.

I feel like so much of what’s happening right now for me personally and practically in relation to my work—and everything in the world—is about visibility.

I definitely know a lot of people on Instagram that I’ve never met, that live all over the world. A big part of my community on Instagram are also my ‘offline’ friends.

Independence is another difficult term because we’re in a moment where the entire world around us is so mediated by corporate platforms that nearly every decision we make is one about whether or not to engage with a platform that is at odds with our values.

I wanted to be part of something and the camera helped me do that. It was my entry point into the world.

The world is animated now in a new way through technology: everything is responsive and interactive and algorithmically sorted into types or “species.” You could say the technology boom has renewed a sense of magical properties in the world that harks back to the folkloric, like the possibility of a talking tree or an animal guide.