At Metonymy Media, we host The Sellout Diaries Podcast. This project provides a fun and engaging creative outlet for us as a team of writers hacking away. It allows members of our team to spend a few hours each week researching the personal histories, careers, and philosophies of well-known artists, dancers, actors, filmmakers, musicians, writers, and all others who made or are making a living in the arts. The thing we were all told it was impossible to do—or at least, very difficult to do without selling out.
In fact, this project started as an examination of that word: sellout. This term is meant as an insult, a reflection that someone has given up artistic integrity to become more successful or popular. We’ve been called sellouts a time or two at Metonymy, as trained creative writers leveraging our skills for businesses.
This led us to some questions. What is artistic integrity? Does it have features that are distinct from personal integrity? Can artistic integrity be identified between different creatives, working in different mediums, sometimes centuries apart? Further, how does a creative preserve their artistic integrity while still trying to pay the bills and eat some food? Where does the distinction between art and craft enter the equation? And how the hell can we use this information to get more successful and popular, dangit?
We won’t claim to answer any or all these questions in our episodes, but we do continue to get curious, explore, and make each other laugh while we do it. Listen to our most recent discussion below or click through to your favorite platform to subscribe or look for an artist you’re interested in learning more about.