Art Unboxed

Art Unboxed Paying Attention

This week my wife, our son, and I were at the doctor. We had a scare with Nicholas regarding his vision, but thank The Lord it turned out okay. While there I saw an elephant lamp, interesting and unusual. Though I finally noticed it, I almost missed it. Thankfully I listened to the voice that said take a photo.

I took a picture. When things were better, I did a pencil sketch, and a digital painting. Because I was paying attention to interesting things around me, even in a stressful situation, it gave me something to relieve the built up stress later. At the time we first saw it, the last thing on my mind was art. When it was all over, the process helped me to wind down.

This wouldn’t have happened quite this way, if I hadn’t been A paying attention, and B present enough to take a quick photo. Lastly, C, I had a good camera with me in the form of my iPhone. Because all of these worked together, I had the opportunity to take a photo. Previously, other than the thousands of pictures of my family, I was not generally a huge picture taker.

Some of my best friends are brilliant photographers, I usually cut heads off. However, since art became more important to me, I’ve taken more pictures. I will admit I completely see the rationale that photos wash out compared to the original, but I also feel that a bad photo for future drawing is better than a forgotten memory.

Have you ever wondered why we call it paying attention? While the origins are not cut and dry, it does indicate an investment. I believe it means you must be present, actively engaged, and noticing things around you. It’s certainly vital in life, whether taking about relationships, faith, or business. Paying attention is also important in art. That’s how I noticed an elephant lamp I might have previously missed.

Paying attention artistically can mean we are being mindful of our composition, our draftsmanship, and our colors. One brush of a variant of color in a painting can change the entire scene for the better. Today scientists x-ray classic paintings, and it’s common for the x-ray to reveal differences underneath the top layer.

Renowned artists from different countries and centuries paid attention to how a slight compositional change might turn a project from a painting to a masterpiece. While I would not call my elephant painting a masterpiece, I was able to improve it. By correcting the areas that were weak, it was stronger at the end than the beginning, all because I was paying attention.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: