19 May 2014

Talk about Art

I recently listened to several Movie Meltdown podcasts about art (and some movies about art). I was struck firstly about how I really have no one to talk about the stuff I do with who can relate to it at all and secondly about how universal attitudes about art are. 

I have written about being creative before but I don’t think I mentioned some obvious things the podcast gang brought up. One thing the artists talked about was that many people don’t understand that being artistic isn’t a gift from on high you are somehow able to realize effortlessly and immediately. Creating something takes lots of practice, experimenting, false starts, dead ends and years of experience. Too often they were asked to draw me something cool or do something well outside their artistic field. It appears to outsiders that if you can paint a picture you can make a sculpture, draw a comic book and film a movie as well. All completely different talents and skill sets. It is the same problem I get with my graphic design work, because I can use photoshop etc I am expected to be able to program and create software, fix hardware and automatically be able to do anything involving a computer. 

Another thing was the why don’t you draw me this, you are creativeyou can make a sign for our street fair sort of conversations artists get from friends, family and even clients. The assumption is they are somehow doing you a favour by letting you do something creative for them. I have never heard of an accountant being told hey! you can do our cycling club taxes!. There is an presumption that an artist will jump at the chance to anything asked of them as though they don’t have their own ideas or their own work to accomplish. It’s pretty rare anyone thinks to pay for these requests, just being asked to do weeks of work is payment enough I guess. I suspect artists don’t often refuse, mostly because there is the blind hope that if they do it, the requesting parties will somehow realize how much effort it takes to accomplish something creative. 

I don’t think these demands are badly intended, it’s just that ART in all caps is thought of as being something leisurely and fun, something that doesn’t take work to do well and is, to be frank, something kids do for amusement… not for adults as a career. 

BTW: look up the Movie Metldown podcast, it’s a conversion between friends more than anything else and can be very amusing and informative.)


T' said...

I don't have anyone to talk to about what I do, either. While I have one or two artist friends, all of whom are long distances away, I really know no cartoonists at all. I have no inking friends, either. On one hand, it's quite lonely. On another, I get more work done this way. :"D

I don't often have people asking art of me. When I have, there have been some pretty big requests but I know what you mean. People just don't understand, I guess.

Behemoth media said...

I am very flattered to do something for a someone when they ask... like for a birthday or house warming gift for example. Also if it's another creative person we often trade talents, like when my friend keamy does narration or acts in one of my films and I do posters and video for his plays or books. When I had a studio with my ex if was great, we shared with another friend we liked a lot and we all gave good feedback on each others work but need bothered each other while we we doing the work. Recently I have been ray Harryhausen's autobiography and he was talking about his drawing style and I realized I had been influenced by his style more than I thought and was excited about the technique but couldn't express it to anyone... well except you just now!

T' said...

I just found your movie blog and it seems you either have comments turned off, or have some kind of permission set up. So I have to post this here:

How have I not known of this blog? I don't think you ever mentioned it and I'm sorry I missed it. The one critique I have is that the font is kind of small and, as white on black, a little hard to read. Otherwise, we were pretty much of the same mind of the movie, though I think I liked it a little more as the problem areas didn't matter as much to me. Did the main young hunk only have one expression? Why yes, he did! It was an almost Colin Farrell "I'm confused all the time" gaze, but his role was thankless anyway. We just need him as a way to get to the next kaiju battle. The one element missing from this movie was the truck with the ray gun shaped like a radar dish on the back of it. Otherwise, it felt like a Godzilla film to me... minus Raymond Burr. :"D