Friday, February 13, 2009

A Different Perspective

Kids are amazing. I once had a professor at art school who would tell us all the time that we are our most creative when we were 5, and then adults slowly suck that creativity out of us until we too are adults trying to be as creative as we were when we were 5. (I don't remember his exact words, but that was the point he was trying to make). I only understood his proclamation at a very surface level at the time (heck, I was only 20). I am now 40, and I have that creative little person in my life. And wow, if I could only be as creative as she is. But is that really what it is? Are we really having our creativity sucked out of us or are we just learning to be less random. Are we losing the spontaneity and thinking too hard about what we do instead of just DOING - regardless of our own prejudices? I try to openly approach my canvas, but I always let the less random, organized part of my brain take over at some point and attempt to give me the value, color, and composition I think is important to a good painting. This brings up all the abstract art critics who like to showcase the paintings done by an elephant, monkey, donkey... fill in the blank, that art critics couldn't distinguish as not being from a professional, trained artist. Primitive art? Abstract art? What meaning does it have then? Well, I would submit this: The meaning is in the ability for an adult to repeat these organic, random, and primitive lines and brushstrokes after having gone thru the long and arduous process of becoming an adult. To reclaim childhood, and as a result, spread that freedom and joy of expression to everyone willing to look.

On a similar note - I always thought I could be a great photographer. How hard can it be? Well - it's hard. And what's worse? My 6 year old daughter takes MUCH more interesting images than I do. I will do my best not to suppress it! Check out a couple of her images from our last walk...

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