What to
Draw or Paint

T   
he subject of what one should draw may raise hackles. It certainly did during the 19th century when the French 'school painters' thought historical and biblical subjects were the only things fit to paint (and portraits - got to make some $). So let's just leave it at "What you might draw or paint".

Drawing What You See Outside of Yourself

This is the easiest thing to do. It requires little thought (about as much as pointing a camera). I mean here the selection of subject - not the execution - which may be exceedingly difficult especially in changing light outdoors.

I have never really appreciated these works as they appear to me to be 'the lesser types'. They lack the direct philosophical aspect which is present in other types. Here you are only choosing the subject in its broadest outline. You are not assembling a "composition - ex nihilo" (my favorite place to start something/anything).

Painting a landscape, unless drastically altered by one's own inner light, is a waste of canvas. Better to use a camera and 'select' a pleasant view. It is difficult to improve on nature. So one might as well just make a copy, blow it up, frame it and add some fake brush strokes with clear acrylic polymer.

What You See In Your Mind

Here is the only other place to go. Drag everything out of your own mind and put it on canvas or paper ... to the best of your ability ... in open comparison to every other artist's work who ever lived.

When you create something original from within it is certain to:

  • Integrate into a viable psychological entity
    I have seen some of Rubens collaborative efforts - he paints the people while another expert paints the animals. These works are obviously the work of more than one person and are therefore philosophically displeasing though they may pass muster aesthetically. They simply do not integrate into an individual artist's mental state. It's like looking at a two-headed cow ... I don't like it.
    However, if you paint the entire thing yourself it must necessarily integrate properly because it is an extension of you and you are viable (living). Aren't you?
    It doesn't matter if your work is good or bad ... it's just ... the work of a viable entity.

  • Show your innermost qualities
    To do art is to confess all. Those who can "read" an art work know everything about you from your selections. (Maybe even what you had for breakfast?) If you are a rat ... it shows. If you are a saint ... that shows. And if you are a comedian you will be remembered for those lost works which you hoped no one would ever see again ... er ... uh ... duh ...

  • Entail the greatest risks of acceptance/rejection If you are willing to reveal all about yourself, you will have a tough time when your best just isn't good enough. This will happen most of the time. You will look in the mirror and repeat this line ... "You are a worthless bum". In the long run ... if you stick it out ... someone will appreciate what you have done ... spontaneously ... and you will feel ... nothing. Well, maybe a little later you will be just a little bit happy about being appreciated.
What You Would Like to See

This is by far the best thing to paint or draw. Something out of yourself which conveys not what you think of the present state of the world but rather what you would "like" the world to look like. Then, you become God ... the god of your own canvas ... create your universe after your own image and likeness.

This is as good as it gets in any endeavor.




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