At its core all great art is simple.
This is because truth is simple. If truth is not simple it is probably not true.
“The art of drawing is the art of omission”
-Max Liebermann 1847-1935
Max Liebermann was a German painter of the Impressionist style
If you make a drawing or painting based on a photograph there is little point in making a copy. A copy of a photograph is not a truth. You already have the true photograph. There is also the truth of the thing that was photographed.
The challenge in art is to edit and interpret what you see, what you think and what you feel.
If you make a drawing or painting from real life, from observation, it is impossible to make a copy of what you see. The visual world is just too complex and layered. The visual world is in three dimensions and you are working with just two. It is full of tones, textures, colours, lights, shadows, forms, lines and meanings.
Furthermore, the reality of what you see is individual to you.
We are faced with an information overload that is constantly accelerating. We intuitively know that our brains can only take in so much visual knowledge.
To be creative we need time to reflect on our own thoughts and observations.
We need time to assimilate the ideas and creations of others. We need to edit. To achieve style you must edit.
The greatest challenge in art is to decide the essence of what you want to say and record. Then you need the discipline to focus on just that. I think this is where individual style comes in. To draw is to think visually.
How can you make more from less?
Tom McPherson's blog on art and creativity.
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