I’ll start this post with a question:
Do you think images effect the way people interpret the world?
This is a thought that has been on my mind heavily for the last couple of years, not in a vague way but in a very precise way. I believe images have a huge affect on people and their sense of what’s possible. I believe it also effects how people define and frame things for better or worse. For this post we’ll focus on the positive end of that spectrum.
As an artist myself, I often feel artists don’t realize the power they have to inspire and ignite the imagination of those who view their art. Like science fiction, art creates visions of what’s possible and shapes the way we look at the world. This can be a beautiful and powerful thing. How many times have you talked with someone about what they found inspirational as a child? Something that caught their imagination and stayed a joy even into adulthood, something that influenced what they saw as magical or the ultimate story. For my boyfriend it was Hulk & Captain America comics, for me it was Dark Crystal & the Hobbit, for so many it was the original Star Wars series. These worlds and images inspire us!
I think most artists don’t give themselves enough credit to see they have a unique and interesting voice. Many times we often re-create what other artists draw or what we think people want to see or a variation of what someone has been successful with (myself included here). Practice & study aside, I’m talking about our original creations. We don’t give ourselves enough credit that we have something interesting to say and that we don’t need to be derivative. That insecurity works against us and, I say selfishly, robs us of new stories that can be told. These are new stories I want to see.
Derivativeness is the art killer.
[images (from left to right): “Skeksis Head: Garthim – Master” by Brian Froud, THE HOBBIT 1977 Ballantine Books, cover artist unknown]