Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Wallflower Blooms

Last night, sometime during the boisterous supper meeting that I was hosting in my typical vociferous and genuinely goofy way as the 'new' Arts Society President, it occurred to me, as a formerly painfully shy wallflower - and I have to interject here because, anyone that knows me now will find this statement incomprehensibly unbelievable, this is the gospel truth - we have certainly come a long way baby.
Hopefully we haven't bloomed into a noxious weed, by the way, but instead have finally found our voice.
And Art did that for me.
It only took about 40 years to get to that place mind you.
The point of my rambling narrative is that what I have discovered is the truth of what gives you that voice is your authentic self - the one you mostly believe nobody wants anything to do with because it's so 'odd'. Well, it turns out that 'you' is actually the person people love best.
How strange it is that most of us live trying desperately to 'fit in' or 'be like them' or whatever the fleeping hello our fragile beings perceive as 'everybody else'. I ponder on this alot.
Anybeloudbeproudway, I guess it boils down to accepting ourselves with all the warts and craters as being worthwhile. I know in Art that the creative work that generates the strongest response is usually the one full of those 'warts' (so to speak). Certainly the most pleasing paintings to our eye contain odd numbers; the distinct planes of the painting is divided into 3s. You have top, middle, bottom and the corresponding left, middle, right and your image covers these planes in such a way that the bulk of the painting lies in one plane with the other two not as prominent or the 'focus' of the painting lies off center. Are you following my drift? In other words, we find images that do not sit dead center the most dynamic and interesting.
Just like people.
The painting is: "The Grecian Girl" by John William Godward, 1861-1922. I used this because she looks so shy but it's also a great illustration for what we're talking about. The focus is her face and if you divide the painting per my post, you will see it sits off center. As well, the bulk of the painting - her lower body and pillows etc. lie in the lower third of the canvas. There is also a 'color hook' that purple wrap catches your eye in the predominantly creamy rose tones of the rest of the painting. Nicely counterbalanced by her dark hair and headband.
But look at that skin! I swear you could touch it and leave an imprint it's so luscious!

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