Guest Post: Michael Cobra // @cobra_mike
I've spent a week trying to come up with the one thing that inspires me. First, I was going to write about the work ethic of Black Flag; then it was the photography of Joel-Peter Witkin; then the graphic design of Art Chantry; the playful creativity of Michel Gondry; the list went on and on. I was looking for some divine inspiration. However, nothing felt so powerful that I could put into words how greatly it had inspired me or why it should inspire you.That week my 3 year old son came home from a preschool class. He told my wife and I how he had pretended a piece of paper was a robot that day and some kids made fun of him for it. We nurture creativity in our kids and this was the first time he had seen a negative side to it. He was really sad. I told him how his Mom and I make a living coming up with ideas that all start as pretending. I told him that when we were young, other people made fun of us for being creative too. So, we found friends that did understand us. That's when it dawned on me. My inspiration in life has come from an innumerable amount of sources. People you don't know, that haven't had books written about them and haven't had documentaries made praising them. Like my brother for having that KISS 8 track I couldn't stop listening to when I was four. Ivan, for giving me that Black Flag/Misfits mix tape. That recruiter that came to my high school and told us about a college that taught graphic design. Chris, for teaching me my first song on the guitar. Laura, for dying my hair pink. Dee, for teaching me about photography. The teachers who ignored the curriculum and made me learn more than I thought I could. Employers who have taken chances on me. The people I've worked with, employed and collaborated with. The people and bands I play music with. Clients I work with who have stuck their necks out to fight for concepts. This list could get really long. We are mirrors of the people, places, things and ideas we choose to surround ourselves with. We are the editors of our own personal culture. A friend posted a quote on Facebook as I was writing this that summed up exactly how I was feeling about my source of inspiration…
"Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I've ever known."
- Chuck Palahniuk