When Machine first opened in 2015, all we had in the space was a blackbook table. We had nothing for sale at all. The idea was mainly to give graffiti writers a space to gather, be creative and have a gallery to showcase their work.
One thing I noticed over the years of doing this was how easy it is to focus on negative things that would happen. Every now and then, someone would steal one of the sketchbooks, some of the markers, or something along those lines.
I would get pissed and take the stuff off the table thinking "why do this for people if they're just going to be dicks about it?". It's interesting how our brains tend to put so much emphasis on the small minority of negative things disregarding all of the positives.
The amount of times that people did stupid shit compared to the amount of positive things that happened over the years is so small. Probably a fraction of one percent negative in comparison, but those negatives always had such an effect.
If I think back over all the years and just look at the positives, so much cool stuff happened. I saw high school kids stop by the shop to draw together after school, turn into adults, get jobs, become different people all while still stopping by to draw in the sketchbooks. There are boxes full of these books with many memories in the form of artwork, sketches and scribbles.
It’s a hard thing to get rewired into not letting negatives play such a big role in decision making. I’m struggling with it right now thinking about hosting events and doing other community things at our new space. My mind tends to go to the negative “what ifs”, but it should be the other way around.
It should be thinking about all the positive things that will happen and how negative things will happen, but they don’t outweigh all the good that will come out of it.
That said, the Machine Blackbook table is still rocking and open at our new Vegas location. Come by for a session any time we’re open!
Weekdays Noon to 8pm
Weekends Noon to 5pm
700 E Sahara Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89104
Great article. You are so right too, easy to get hung up on the negative, even if it’s minuscule when compared to the positive. Good for you for keeping this creative space open to artists. Can’t wait to drop by the next time I’m in Vegas. Peace
Always exciting to hear about the history. I understand the way a negative occurrence can over shadow an overall positive thing. It’s tough to separate the emotions but it’s necessary for success I think