Creative Wisdom from Yoda and Two Other Cinema Sages

Greetings earthlings! To bring some lightness to your Humpday, we’re going to explore the wisdom from characters of some cinemas wisest sages! Great art educates as much as it entertains. The heroes in these stories are doing more than setting out to destroy a magic ring or defeat an empire. They are being tested, challenged and forced to grow…. Sound familiar? Let’s take a page from some fictional greats in hopes to help you on your own journey.


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Mental Before Physical With Yoda

Much like training to be a Jedi, training to be an artist begins in the mind. In the same way there are physical skills to learn as a Jedi like using a lightsaber, each artist develops skill with the tools of the craft like Ableton or guitar. But the real work happens within YOU, and this classic scene offers numerous quotes that demonstrate this fact.

“Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda

  • This quote speaks to the idea of duality. When you “try” to do something, you can either fail or succeed. When you “do” something there is only one outcome. Think about all the things you do throughout the day, and how effortless they are.

“No different. Only different in your mind!” – Yoda

  • Lifting the X-wing out of the swamp and lifting a rock are different externally, but the internal process of lifting both is the same via the force. Focus on the lifting, and he can lift anything.
  • When you make music for any reason. For fun. For a label release. To score a movie. The internal process is the same via the creative muse. Focus on creating and you can create anything.

“I don’t believe it!”Luke

“That is why you fail.”Yoda

  • BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. If you don’t, no one else will. 

Decisions And Control With Gandalf

Throughout the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Gandalf is a source of knowledge and wisdom, guiding Frodo on his journey. This journey comes to a complete halt just as Frodo is questioning his decisions in the face the circumstances placed on him by carrying the ring to Mordor. Making difficult decisions in face of circumstances out of one’s control is a universal experience, which sparks the following advice from Gandalf:

“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” – Gandalf 

Upon examination, this quote speaks to key aspects of life and creation:

Control: Can you control if your record gets signed? Can you control your collaborators? The only thing we have control over is ourselves. Our mindset. Our actions. You can control how you spend your time.

Gratitude: To have time at all is a blessing, but being able to decide how to spend your time, well that’s a whole different universe. There are so many people who live closer to you than you realize who do not share that luxury. Don’t take it for granted.

Focus: Focus is the act of channeling energy. If some channels their energy towards making conscious decisions of how to spend their time, their time has more potential to serve them. 

Choices Over Abilities with Dumbledore

Before we were artists ourselves, we were consumers of music being enthralled by other artists’ abilities. What we don’t see or hear as consumers are the choices our other artists made along the way to reach to develop their abilities, and as Dumbledore told Harry Potter when Harry discovered some chilling similarities between himself and Voldemort:

“It is not our abilities that show what we truly are. It is our choices.” – Dumbledore

Fall in love with the process. Not the result.

  • Abilities are the result. Choices are the process. What choices can best serve the development of your abilities?

Hard work over talent.

  • If someone thinks they’re talented they might think they don’t have to practice their craft. Or they might think they can be dismissive of other people in the industry. Do you think those choices will lead to good outcomes?
  • Hard work beats talent every time. If you don’t think you’re talented, make the choice to work harder and you will be. If you do think you’re talented, make the choice to build on that talent.

About Icon Collective

ICON Collective is a Los Angeles and Online music production school that teaches you core technical skills while unlocking your unique creative process. Mentorships with industry professionals let you access real-world insights and help you personalize your music education. Check out our Music Production Programs.


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