On Listening To Music

April 17 2013

Just like any designer, I listen to music for inspi­ra­tion, to keep a steady pace, and to keep myself awake while design­ing. My music choices differ as much as the design I’m work­ing on or the mood I’m in, and may change from hour to hour. Folk, dub­step, rap, clas­sic rock, cur­rent rock, sound­tracks, sound­scapes, or bad pop music are common types of music that fill my head and influ­ence my designs.

Some­times though, music gets to be a bit much, and I cannot stand to listen to another second of it. It hap­pens every few days when I’ve been lis­ten­ing to music, seem­ingly non-stop, and sud­denly, I real­ize the painful noise that the world calls music is making me sick, and I have to get away from it as soon as pos­si­ble.

When I need music, it’s like coming to a undis­turbed pond. I must dis­rupt it, and so I find a siz­able rock and toss it a few feet in front of me. The rip­ples form from the epi­cen­ter and rever­ber­ate off the shore, and soon enough the entire pond is filled with fading rip­ples that over­lap each other. At this point, most people will walk away from the actual pond with the full under­stand­ing it will soon return to its calm state. 

How­ever, when it comes to music, it seems that I stay there and con­tinue throw­ing stones of vary­ing sizes into the pond. I’ll throw my dub­step rock (it’s very jagged and brightly col­ored), and soon after, my smooth folksy stone will be tossed way on the other side of the pond so its rip­ples take a few min­utes to reach me. A little while later, the Lady Gaga or Black­a­li­cious or The Black Keys or Ellie Gould­ing rocks all go in, one after another. 

Then I’ve real­ized that I’ve for­got­ten what a beau­ti­ful sight the pris­tine untouched pond looked like in the first place, and I want it to be still.

When we’ve thrown so many rocks and stones and tree branches in an effort to enhance the beauty of the nat­ural still­ness, we can easily lose sight of the pond itself.

If we keep on, there won’t be any pond left.