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What about the electronics in your life?

November 26, 2012

Mixed media drawing from artist's sketchbookIf making art is about tuning into an inner understanding of reality (your own way of seeing and processing the world), then it seems possible that electronic gadgets and tools might create some static that interrupts the reception. When do electronics cease being a tool and, instead, become a distraction?

It’s way too easy to get caught up in technology as if it had a value external to its actual usefulness. It seems likely that, at the height of exposure to multiple electronic inputs, that the human brain simply cannot take in that much information, relearn that many operating systems, or respond to that much stimulus on a daily basis. Whew. In spite of the urge to participate (as marketing ploys for social media suggest), one can be Facebooked, Twittered, internetted, and e-mailed to distraction.

And here’s where I’m going with this: making art should engage the same filtering system. More techniques, more supplies, more styles can carry the same threat of overload. As many possibilities there are for adding new electronic resources to your gadget stable, it is equally possible to be influenced by art marketers to attend more workshops, buy more new materials, and experiment with new styles to get you out of your rut. I think it might be wise to apply a “filter” to put electronics into a more subservient role and stop them from hogging one’s creative energy.

Conte crayon on 4 cradled panels, each 12x12 inchesSometimes a good old pencil on a blank piece of paper holds limitless possibilities. So, don’t be afraid to return to basics and work within limitations. They might just prove fruitful.

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