Code is comfortable

Before I started coding, I was an illustrator and designer. My work was visual and aesthetic. Most of all, it was subjective.

I struggled with that part of the work. I had to convince not only clients, but myself, that my work was worth money. That part was way harder than doing the work itself, and I never got good at it.

Along the way, I accidentally learned to code. And I remember realizing early on that this was a whole different type of career. I didn’t have to convince anyone about the utility here. If it worked, it worked.

I was eager to jump ship from art land into code land. I felt a burden lifted off my shoulders. I would no longer have to try to explain to a client why they should pay me hundreds for a logo when they could get a hundred logos for the same price online.

Many people think coding is hard. It is. But for me, in a way, it’s easier and more comfortable then art.

Code is comfortable because it is has so much certainty. You can write something and know that it’s good, because it works as it “should”. No one can say otherwise - the proof is in the pudding.

And if it’s not good, you can trace a clear path to making it good.

I don’t want to say that writing code is totally devoid of subjectivity. There’s a ton of creativity and taste involved in writing code. But at it’s core, it all comes down to yes or no, true or false, 1 or 0. The core is objective and binary, and all the opinions and tastes layered on top cannot change that core.

Art and aesthetics, on the other hand, has no such core. It’s subjective on every level, though it sometimes tries to pretend otherwise. And that was scary for me.

I was afraid of that ambiguity. I wanted stability and predictability. I found it in code.

The downside is that I’ve gotten too comfortable there. I don’t want to live my life as a one dimensional coding machine. So I want to journey back out into the messy, chaotic, and often scary world of art and subjectivity.

You’ll be seeing more art from me soon, I hope.

I might send a newsletter sometime.