Thursday, August 23, 2012

TV Topics

In the past I've posted many quick drawings of media personalities made while watching political TV talk shows . They are done directly in ink without any preliminary pencil as I try to capture a likeness.

Much in the same way, the piece on the left started as a quick B&W ink drawing, done without plan, reacting to TV news images during Operation "Shock and Awe" which opened the unfortunate Iraq War.  Much like the "King" print I showed in the Sunday Comics post of a few weeks ago, it was scanned, extraneous marks eliminated using Photo Shop, printed original size (5x7) then color applied using my favorite Prismacolor pencils.

Like wise, the one below is my response to a program about .... well, let's let the art work do the talking!

Really, in the end it's the art itself that has to communicate. A visual work, whether quick sketch, highly finished painting or any other kind of art, has to stand on its own, making its message or purpose known without the intervention of verbal explanation.  Yes, an artist's statement of overall intent or interest at an exhibition is a reasonable thing but if an individual work requires a couple of paragraphs to make the message clear, then that work fails as far as I'm concerned. Not that the message has to be absolutely clear, concise and unambiguous but the fact is, it is a visual presentation!  If you go to a concert it's the music that carries the message and moves you. You do not separate one from the other without damage.  

The piece above is not obscure. It's a simple message presented a thousand times in the past but it's my image, my style, my "voice" if you will.  Other works are not easy and may take real time to comprehend, - perhaps a lifetime.  When doing your own work or viewing that of others, step back, spend time just looking, feeling, understanding.  Visual art, just like music, should speak directly to the viewer and have a gut level impact. Don't try to interpret, the "message" will come intuitively. Study it, absorb it,  - above all enjoy it!

"It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing."  Duke Ellington

"The Medium is the Message."  Marshall McLuhan

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