My Kid Could Paint That
I’m sure we’ve all heard this spiel. When attending exhibitions or being presented with an artwork at school the general mumbling of ‘my kid could do that,’ or ‘I could do that.’
The negativity of those statements has always bugged me. Why should a seemingly simple piece be dismissed as ‘art’ merely because we feel it could be easily achieved? Shouldn’t the accessibility of art be a good thing? I always wanted to say to those people, you could? Well, go on then get painting.*
Why is it that we feel art must be this bigger than us mysterious thing? Why does something simple madden us? I don’t really know the answers (sorry) but I do think it’s very interesting.
You could bring the same thought into other mediums as well: pop music vs indie/alternate, genre novel vs literary. Why should something created to be accessible or ‘for the people’ be looked down on?
Or does the mere response to a ‘simple’ piece negate its accessibility at all? Making the viewer feel superior to the artist instead of, maybe, empowering them to make their own art. Is it perhaps because we feel there’s nothing to look up to or to strive for? Instead of feeling like there could be a way in to this mysterious art making business.
In the piece pictured above by Hans Hofmann we (well, I anyway) know little about its making. We don’t know the struggle of the artist. And we could, in fact, dismiss the struggle entirely. It looks too easy, that song was too simple, that book was too fluffy. I think it would be a mistake to dismiss the struggle in these mediums. Because the maker probably did bleed to make it.
Anyway, that’s my spiel for the evening. Let me know your thoughts :)
*I wouldn’t say that because loud talking in such situations is frowned upon. Also is playing a game where you see how close you can get to the painting without touching it.
WIP It Good!
So remember some time ago when I blogged all about keeping quiet and please don’t ask me about my WIP because all the magic might disappear? Ah, screw it. I LOVE talking about my WIP.
As part of the WIP It Good Blogfest here’s what I’m working on right now:
WIP Title: Hungry Sun
Word Count (projected/actual so far): 60k/13,400
Genre: YA Contemporary
How long have you been working on it?: About two months
Elevator Pitch: Zoe March–an eighteen-year-old claustrophobic art school reject–travels across the country to deliver an unopened letter from her long dead mother addressed to her estranged grandmother.
Brief Synopsis (300 words or less):
Lillian is a guarded individual, prickly to the touch, who lives on an orange grove owned by Zack, an old flame of Zoe’s mother. She doesn’t want anything to do with Zoe and Zoe can’t leave fast enough. But Zack promises that ‘Lil’ will come around and convinces her to stay. Zoe meets Blake, Zack’s son, who shows her how to pick oranges, introduces her to a motley band of backpackers helping out for the season, and challenges her to find out who she really is. Zoe falls in love with the wide open landscape and big skies of her mother’s home town, not to mention Blake, and finds new inspiration for her artwork. Zoe learns that her grandmother is a gifted artist and is determined to crack her hard shell.
Zoe hones her art with the help of Lillian and the two begin to grow close. Lil opens up about Zoe’s mum and eventually shares the reason she pushes people away.
Far from where she felt she belonged Zoe learns how deep the roots of family can go.
(Story is always evolving so might look pretty different when I’m done.)
Are you looking for a Critique Partner/Beta Reader: I have two very lovely CPs but I am always on the hunt for beta readers.
Chvrches - Zvvl
First of all: OMG look a blog post!
I just read this brilliant post from Nova Ren Suma about her process of outlining. And it has stirred some thoughts.
Writers seem to be divided into two categories when it comes to process. Plotting and Pantsing. While I think that the lines are a bit greyer than that (you might be a loose plotting pantser perhaps) to keep it simple I’ll just refer to those two categories.
When I first delved into the writing world my impression of the two categories was this: Pantsers = rock stars and Plotters = nerds. Naturally, I wanted to sit at the cool table. Pantsers throw everything to the wind and write with abandon. They give the rules the forks and do what they want. While plotters outline meticulously and know everything before they set pen to paper or finger to keyboard.
So, I donned my flower crown, swirled my pretty dress (hmm maybe pantsers are hippies?) and skimmed my copy of No Plot? No Problem! And what can I say after two years and one painful manuscript later? *whispers* am I aloud to give back my pants?
I think I might give plotting a go.
Here’s why I truly think I pantsed my first manuscript: fear. Fear that I didn’t have a story, an ending, a climax, fear that everything would fall down, fear that I had so many holes my MS resembled a poorly crocheted sock. Fear. Fear. Fear. Somehow discovering that in an outline felt worse than discovering it on the page. But I’m sure it would’ve saved me some thorough rewriters…or maybe not.
So, was I wrong to pants? No. Like I said I was scared. And that fear of writing will, well, stop you writing. Yes my MS was a huge mess at the end but I still pulled out 55,000 words of something.
The danger of identifying yourself with a category is if something in you changes your chosen identifier can feel like a box you can’t get out of. The writing process is so personal and you need to sometimes try different things to find out what works and what doesn’t work for you.
Also, plotters aren’t nerds. Seriously, is this high school? Gee whizz. We’re all out there trying to tame this giant beast of story and to (loosely) quote Patrick Ness, “If you get to the end of your manuscript, you’ve done it right.”
Now, excuse me while I go outline. *puts on nerd glasses* ;)
Absence & Catching Up
Well, hello neglected blog. I hope you are well.
But I miss you. So I’m going to try and start posting again. Soon.
Local Natives - Mt Washington
Feeling the feels
New story play
How To Dress Well - & It Was You
Currently lost under a revisions landslide.
The Lone Bellow - You Can Be All Kinds Of Emotional
Want album now yes.
C2C - Down The Road
Trin In The Wind
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