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Monday, November 1, 2010

Draw, Draw, Draw

And that's what I did this weekend. Did a fifteen minute quicky of my woods as seen through my window. The fall colors in sunlight caught my eye--they were so different from the photo I took in the morning, (left side bar). Did finishing touches on Kelly and signed off--the wine glass switch took care of the erasure glitch. JR was another failure even with charcoal. I think I've got the shape of his face--and some nice guy's eyes, but they're not my guy's. I totally ignored the mouth for now. It's time to do a grid study. My subject did call to tell me what he thought about yesterday's post and it wasn't flattering. He was right of course, but would he like any drawing I did of him if he doesn't like any of the photographs he's in? No. Then I read a little more of Huge MacLeod's book Ignore Everybody.

As luck would have it, I came across a chapter that pertains to what anybody else, (an audience), thinks of your artwork. The importance or non importance of an audience for an artist's work has been a discussion I've been following another blog based upon the thoughts of another author/artist. Mr. MacLeod's opinions are more to my liking. Public opinion should not shape an artist's work. What do you think?

Frankly, I think you're better off doing something on the assumption that you will not be rewarded for it, that it will not receive the recognition it deserves, that it will not be worth the time and effort invested in it.
The obvious advantage to this angle is, of course, if anything good comes of it, then it's an added bonus.
The second, more subtle and profound advantage is that by scuppering all hope of worldly and social betterment from the creative act, you are finally left with only one question to answer: Do you make this damn thing exist or not?
And once you answer that truthfully for yourself, the rest is easy."


  1. Dear Linda,
    ..well, the author should have been rich enough.
    Kind regards, Sadami

  2. He does have a regular paying job. He's in the wine business. That afford's him his idealistic view's with regards to catering to an audience. I have a paying job too of sorts. The design/build business was wonderful and allowed me to be idealistic, but has deteriorated with the recession. So I might be changing my opinion. The Fine art business could be where I'm headed?

  3. I agree with that statement. It's not about not caring about the market. If you try to be authentic you can't... it's about not trying. Once you stop caring about what others think you become authentic and confident, then success is easy. You can't do it the other way around.

  4. Sounds like a good weekend.

    I am glad that I am a graphic designer, so my art can just be fun, with my own brief. For me, it does kill my creativity to some extent when I think it has to please an audience... When I uploaded my work on Etsy, I stopped being creative and free with my art...

    ps. I love your forest piece. Very dynamic.

    pps. Thanks for visiting my succulent blog. Re your comment... not sure if you are aware that I normally upload my art to my other blog. Have a nice week.

  5. Hi Mark. I agree wholeheartedly. In my job, I bend over backwards trying to get into my client's head and design spaces that will please her/him. In my art, not on your life. That's mine. I can only paint to please me.

    Evelyn, I didn't know you had an art blog I'll visit it today. I signed up for Etsy just last week thinking I would do that. What holds me back is I don't want score keeping to get in my head and shape the art I put up for sale--Did you sell anything? How many did you sell? What do you sell? Yet, there's a practical side of getting rid of the art I've made. I need to make room for the new art I'm making. My studio's not that big.

  6. Dear Linda,
    For a picture book illustrator, audience is critical. A manuscript has a target audience. Illustrators cannot be narcissistic or simple Aesthetics. According to the opinion above, does fine art exclude illustration and picture book illustrators?

    As I acknowledge art is identity, it stands between subjectivity and objectivity. I need a third party to share joy etc through my art work.

    When I read your post, I felt the title, "Ignore Everybody" interesting. It implies the denial of oneself at the same time. (I did a bit psychology.) I happily accept anyone, because I love myself properly. If an artist/person has a real and genuine confidence, she smiles at whatever others comments would be. Not ignoring, but accepting.

    Of a commercial aspect, yes, artists must earn bread and selling products is important. Once an artist told me, "If your work sits in your room, it's a hobby. When it comes out and known by others, it's art" that impressed me so much. What a practical definition of art, I thought.

    I must go. Just a thought.
    Thank you for your precious time.
    Kind regards, Sadami