Just as we might ask a critic not to call not good a work for not being what it is not intended to be, we might remember expecting a like from any particular audience predisposed to dislike the chosen form doomed to deletion. We often think others think like we do, but they probably don’t. We persist in putting our selfie into play in the hopes of turning on an audience to a new experience. But before this post devolves into another discussion of what is good, let’s update the recent doodles, many of which have received welcomed likes from the general audience online community (hover for titles):
Artists like van Gogh who truly lust for life can afford to ignore pandering or otherwise trying to persuade an audience of anything, let alone what might be good, because those artists pursue their work free and unencumbered from the fickle vicissitudes of audience likes and dislikes and market influenced fads. The cost of this artistic stubbornness is usually obscurity, the rat infested garret, fasting; the reward is independence, exploration of the unknown, relaxation.
These various recent venues, if the attempt is art, (facebook, twitter, blogs, instagram, etc.) are as full of activity as the Midwest summer evening near the lake is full of mosquitoes, where each like becomes a bite that draws blood and soon begins to itch like crazy for more. Bites and likes, interchangeably. In any case, each of these venues presents a certain form that challenges the artist to conform with the appropriate content for the coveted like. No likes doesn’t mean no appreciation. One may safely assume lurkers around every post. Or one may at least tell oneself so.
Think maybe for a moment of the undiscovered or otherwise ignored (perhaps worse) artist who has invested much more emotion and investment and expectation in a work longer than the doodle (the epic novel, the still oil painting that seems to move, the play with a cast of a dozen burning stars). One begins to envy the popular doodler who survives on fish and chips and cheap beer, and turns away with the crowd from the hunger artist. What is it we want, what are we looking for when we open a book, look at a painting, watch a play unfold? What does it take for us to simply like something? A like is like a smile; it’s not a kiss.
Some evenings are full not of mosquitoes but lightning bugs, fire flies, glow worms – that light the length of a like. But it’s foolish to lust for likes. What’s important is to like what you are doing. A neighbor recently asked, “What are you doing, Joe?” If I only knew, I’m sure I could stop. Sometimes people ask what when what they mean is why. In any case, don’t lust for the like; like for the lust.
Comics page update. Still having fun with a perfect mobile device art form. The drawings are made using fingers and thumbs on Memo Draw on the cell phone. I’ve added to the Comics page of The Coming of the Toads a few of the more popular recent drawings.
The old phone took quarters to make a call. I can doodle with fingers pictures on the new phone. I’ve been working on some Mini Poster Pics. Check out Comics page for large versions.
We’re in primary school art class, where the students have been told to draw a picture of a house.
Francine draws this:
“What’s this?” Missus Portmanteau, Francine’s art teacher, asks, pointing to the big red circle in the sky. “It looks like a big rock is about to fall on your house.”
Francine is nonplussed in the face of a teacher who doesn’t recognize the sun.
“The sun,” Francine explains.
“The sun isn’t that big,” Missus Portmanteau says, and enters a note in her red book.
The following week in art class, Francine draws this:
“Mister Sapidot [science teacher] said the sun spins,” Francine answers.
“Your sun is too big, your house too small.”
Francine feels like the rock has fallen on her house.
“Now what?” Missus Portmanteau asks.
“Someone is taking a nap,” Francine says.
Missus Portmanteau doesn’t say anything, but she makes a firm mark in her red book with a red pen.
It’s the final art class before summer vacation. Francine’s father has promised a special surprise if her report card looks good. This week, she nails the art project.
Francine has learned that to do good in school and please her father she must conform to her teacher’s view of reality.
Chattering swing of ratchet wrench
Hatted on hexed nut box bolt head
Alloy heat threaded hatchet hoax
Treat tears time tender torpid box
Tightly drawn reach of technical
Entity rat tatting chattel
Rat a tach tech teacher hat chat
By the stunned thwacked beach
Or far inland brine dry valleys
Xylophone loops accordingly roll.