About This Blog and Art

About This Blog It will soon be coming to an end, for a number of reasons. Firstly, at 84, I have had only one life and not all of it has been as ridiculous and risky as reported. Secondly I found a fair proportion of you out there are not interested in my political and social rants, or if you are you don’t comment, and the purpose of ranting is to change things and my audience is not large enough for it to be a reasonable expectation.

Starting in May, or there abouts, I will re-publish some of the Golden Oldies, one at a time for those who joined late, pieces which you seemed to find entertaining. When that. and the last of my stuff has been aired I shall find something else to do at 5 am., and probably bid you all farewell, gratefully and with dignity.

I told you, my Grandson, Steve, gave me the Blog as a present. I had no idea how it worked or what to expect in responses, but it has been a fascinating experience. I am too cynical and have had too many bumps, to be big headed. I know I am still only a miniscule reporter in a vast industry. However, the reactions have been illuminating and stimulating, gathered purely by the stats, not comments. In the 60’s I had an Artie phase when I had photographs, a picture and a sculpture accepted in national exhibitions, and like now, what I thought was my best work was rejected, and what I entered as a chance was accepted. It is, of course, all subjective and time and chance. Running a Blog is a bit like shouting down a well, all you get back is the sound of your own voice. I think it would pall after a bit if it were not for the Stats, the numbers of pages read, after submissions. These, turned into graphs, tell an amazing story, but what it means intrinsically is still a mystery.

Art For Art’s Sake! Returning to the subject of Art – At one time I was prepared to accept the opinion of experts as gospel, in spite of knowing that artistic criticism is inevitably subjective, but that is all a thing of the past! Take the case of the daffodil picture. On evening I found a decorated Spanish basket on the kitchen table, with a bunch of daffodils. The whole collection gave me an idea. I pulled a hearth rug up against the fireplace to provide a neutral base and background and then, with some flowers in the basket and others on the floor, I made an elliptical composition completing the shape by tossing a pair of scissors on the rug so they fell casually. The idea was to give the impression that the back-lit flowers had just been cut, brought in casually in the basket, some had spilled and were all yet to be arranged. I was delighted with the final enlargements and Sophie gave her Good Housekeeping Stamp as well.

I showed it to a professional who was part of the leadership of the Camera Club. He looked at it casually and then handed it back with only one comment, ‘I would not give that many marks, I’m right handed and I couldn’t pick up the scissors, they are the wrong way round.’ A few weeks later I was at a meeting where we all submitted two mounted half-plate photos for criticism. One of the beginners who was terribly new fangled with his little daughter of about a year and a half, had put in a photo of his little girl, hunkered down among the flowers she was picking, in the way all small children do. I have some of our own girls in that pose. The genius picked it up to talk about it and I could see the look of expectancy on the beginner’s face, which suddenly turned to horror. It was not the criticism of the picture, all beginners are used to that. and might crumple a bit from time to time if the comments are a bit harsh, but they can generally take it on the chin. No! The bastard had said that the picture looked as though the child was having a pee. I could not believe that one could be so crass, I had looked at my photos of Linda in exactly that pose, smelling the flowers, and that interpretation had never crossed my mind – until then!.

If one is offering art for exhibition, or for critical help, remember, it is a subjective business and be prepared to be disappointed, it is inevitable most of the time. If you are asked for your opinion, the same applies, so be generous with praise and sparing with the truth – in your view!

Categorized as General

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