The Image Collector (farbel) wrote,
The Image Collector

on the validity of digital art and other doodles

i periodically go through dry spells, when i find myself avoiding my easel. a while back i pulled myself out of one of these slumps by religiously doing a quick, playful sketch (or doodle) every day. just fun and fast. minimal thought or refinement involved. it primed my pump, so to speak, and eventually i was back to painting again.

i am in one of those droughts right now, and i have been doodling again, but this time on the computer. i take one of my digital photos off my hard drive and then manipulate it using the filters in MGI Photosuite and, less often, Photoshop. i get some quite attractive results:

i think they are quite beautiful, and they are working, insofar as my creative juices are starting to flow again, but something about the process bothers me.

when i take a blank piece of paper and draw lines on it, i am the catalyst of whatever happens there. i may be constrained by the medium, but i control it as well.

when i take a photograph i exercise choices of composition, content, focus, etc.

when i take that photograph and click on a filter, someone else turns it into a new work of art for me. the person who wrote the program is the one who determines what happens to it. i may choose the filter from the selection they provide me, but they choose what the filter does to my work.

the result is a refined, aesthetically pleasing, interesting abstract, but it is too "easy". all i have to do is click on the filter and someone else does all the work. it might be hard for you to find your way from my original photo to my end result, but if you tried to, you would come across many equally attractive and interesting abstracts.

i encourage you to try it.

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