Watching vs Seeing

One of the fearless leaders of the Pellar Creative Entrepreneur program, Joey Watson, instructed us to watch instead of see, during our time in New York City.  I think he ment by this is to experience our trip as fully as possible, to observe with an involved mind the world around us.  

At TEDxBroadway Ellen Issacs spoke of ethnographic studies of users in technology (both high and low tech) and these studies allowed you to see what could not be communicated directly to the ethnographer by the user. This observation is helpful in finding  solutions to problems that you may not have know existed.


There are many things to see, but we often go through life unappreciative of what we are seeing, 

As a composer and musician, listening plays a strong role in my sensory experience. New York is full of sounds. We grow accustomed to sounds that we are always around, the high pitched hum of computer hard drives, the squeal of old tvs, cars driving by in the night, trains and sirens in the night. John Cage, in his music and philosophy, made the everyday sounds that we often categorize as noise worthy of our attention.

While attending concerts in the past, I have often been distracted by the nosies of those around me. But if I listen to those noises and appreciate them as part of the experience of attending the concert, I become less distracted by them, and experience a more fulfilling concert, where my attention is focused on all the sounds of the space I inhabit. Never have I enjoyed a concert  more than I did, on Saturday at the New York Philharmonic.

At the Museum Of Modern Art (MOMA) there is much to see. But to attempt and see it all at once and as fast as possible does little justice to the works themselves. Observing art is more apt than seeing or watching it, but better still is basking, art is like the sun, it warms you, it can burn you, and it is dangerous to look at for too long, it can really impact you if you allow yourself time for it to do so.

I hope I remember to be observant, and appreciate my experiences no that I have returned to Louisiana. 

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