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Friday, January 19, 2007

Creative expression

Canadian artist Emily Carr was influenced by a book written by Ralph M. Pearson, How to See Modern Pictures (1925). Here is a passage from the book:

The Creative artist...begins to draw with his conceptual vision turned inwards searching the storehouse of his mind. That storehouse is well-stocked for he has made preliminary studies in plenty--probably has drawn a model accurately in order to possess himself of all knowledge of details. And now he is ready to use his material to create a picture. The inner fire burns. He comes to his canvas filled with a suppressed power that urges hand to vital, swinging expression. Does he feel the bending weight of sorrow? His hand flows the bend of sorrow into line. No thought of detail. Hardly a glance at the model. The feel of sorrow flowing into form! His problem becomes one of controlling the exuberance of spirit, of holding it to the slow, laborious process of organization, of conserving the force in him to hour after hour, and day after day, and week after week perhaps, of controlled release.... What was in him has gone into the work, where, 'if his power has been great enough', it will live forever. Thus is the felt nature of a thing eternalized into design.

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