Laminated collage by me!
The major value in life is not what you get.
The major value in life is what you become.
I am rich and proud of every penny I own. I made my money by my own effort, in free exchange and through the voluntary consent of every man I dealt with – the voluntary consent of those who employed me when I started, the voluntary consent of those who work for me now, the voluntary consent of those who buy my product. I shall answer all the questions you are afraid to ask me openly. Do I wish to pay my workers more than their services are worth to me? I do not. Do I wish to sell my product for less than my customers are willing to pay me? I do not. Do I wish to sell it at a loss or give it away? I do not. If this is evil, do whatever you please about me, according to whatever standards you hold. These are mine. I am earning my own living, as every honest man must. I refuse to accept as guilt the fact of my own existence and the fact that I must work in order to support it. I refuse to accept as guilt the fact that I am able to do it and do it well. I refuse to accept as guilt the fact that I am able to do it better than most people – the fact that my work is of greater value than the work of my neighbours and that more men are willing to pay me. I refuse to apologize for my ability – I refuse to apologize for my success – I refuse to apologize for my money.
~Ayn Rand (Atlas shrugged)
Good Friday to you all.
I woke this morning with the word value on my mind…don’t know why, I just did. (Don’t ask me I just work here)
So, first I went looking for some wise words on the topic of value.
Results are above.
What I got to inside my head was this:
my value (personal) is in what I do and sometimes in what I choose not to do.
I choose (more often than not) to do things my way. I have never been a follower, but also not always been a leader either. I just walk this weird middle ground of student and teacher. Like right now I am working on the large sketchbook about love for the February show. I created 11 pages (11 being a master number for creation) and I have completed about half of them.
This is the point in any large work (it’s small in size but you just try to think up 11 images/works all in the same theme…it’s not easy) that I usually want nothing more to do with the project.
The ideas that were at the top of my head in the beginning are done. The project now needs those valuable connective works to make the whole thing connect and flow.
So…to keep myself from becoming distracted and going back to the easel (where the art comes just a little easier most of the time) I put up this (above) work that has needed finishing for about three months. All she needs are some hands to be painted in and a little work on the sky in the background. (There’s more to this painting now than is shown in this progress picture I took while I was all into the work) I’ll probably never do it…because I lost interest…so she is my safe painting…to keep me on track with the current project.
Sound crazy yet?
Well…back to the value issue…I was thinking this morning about the value of my work. I was thinking about some of the old masters, and how some of them used gold and silver in their works because it would insure the works value to the art market or the patron. Then I thought, well that’s not me…I don’t paint or create for the sale. Then I was still wondering around in my back brain; I thought about how some artist (modern) are using their fingerprints, hair and other various body or DNA markers in their work…for the same reasons as above, monetary value later down the line. Well, that’s not me either, I don’t really care right now if I ever become “known”. I sometimes don’t even sign works because it was not about me in the first place…it was the subject matter itself that needed out of my brain/body/spirit. I never owned it in the first place.
Mate Man and I were talking the other day about the direction my work is going in. He was saying that maybe it’s time for me to work on more complicated imagery. Like Dali or Picasso did…you know there is a lot going on in their works. I really did think about that for awhile. I chewed and chewed on it. I paint very simply…I like my backgrounds to be just that, in the background. I use a lot of texture and color, but it’s not the focus of my work. He said he thought (and I have heard it before) that my simplistic style is very zen-like. I can and could do much more complicated work if I wanted to. Of course I could. Even when I was a landscape designer my designs were simplistic, easy and not super complicated…but beautiful. You can go through any of the gardens that I have done over the years, and they are still working. ( that’s good design baby!)
You can see the wonderful Lilly or whatever because it is backed up by thoughtful background elements…see? Simplicity is my thing. I value simplicity in all things.
Plus don’t ever tell me what to do…it just ain’t gonna work.
Ok…so, where was I , oh yes…value.
I value the process, the learning, the inspiration, the discovery, the working itself.
I value working the most.
The act of doing/working is something that never leaves me cold.
For myself, I value the works of the masters, and living artists alike, for what they can/could do, for what I learn and feel looking at the works and the skill. I like complicated art, I really do…I just don’t create it.
So, today…I am relaxing into the stress of my value system. By that I mean…I don’t need to press myself into a shape or form of creation that does not come naturally to me. My system of creation is all about my path of discovery; discovery of my inner self and how that relates to the world at large. That’s it.
Like I said…I am a simple person with a complicated inner world.
What of it?
The real value of my work comes when I get to interact with another being that likes, hates, gets, or sees something I’ve done. The look, the interaction the discussions…that’s better than money (at times) to me. I like making a sale…don’t get me wrong…did I hear you needed some art? *grins*
So, I am off this morning to create something that resonates with my inner world. Whatever that may be. My value is what I am.
It’s pretty simple.
I bleed and breath.
I just AM.
What’s your value?
Think and discuss amongst yourselves (in the comments).
Have a wonderful, loving weekend all…love the ones you are with…then give some of that good stuff to your inner self.
Let the heart light shine.
Buy art from living artists, or their work will never be worth a damn when they are dead.
This is just for fun:
That’s a 59% chance of outliving the Zombie attacks folks…whew…good to know!