Lying in bed listening to Paul McCartney and Wings. The overhead light is off, but a mellow sherbert orange glow is coming from the Nightmare Before Christmas nightlight / slash / Scentsy warmer stuck to the wall at then end of the bed.
Mariah's asleep already, which is good cuz she ain't feeling well. Probably has a cold, but we had to drive to OHSU in Portland (Oregon) today so she could get a covid test. We'll know the results in 2 to 5 days. Meanwhile, she's off work. Our older daughter and her baby are ill, too. Hopefully, everyone gets better soon!
As Fate would have it, I'm still working from home, helping college kids finish writing papers. (I got to read a paper about Frankenstein today...monsters are kind of my thing... And got PAID to do it!!! Fancy!)
But both before and after work, I DID THE ART.
For those who are unfamiliar with the term, an ART is what happens when you take bits of "life" or "reality" or "society" and show them to other people, but in a way that makes those other people feel uncomfortable, confused, or perhaps a bit scared. (They will usually either make a sour face at what they are experiencing or they might laugh---sometimes derisively---when their brain tries to interpret whatever it is that they've encountered...but can't. It's actually quite fun to watch!)
Here are a few ARTs that I've willed into existence in the recent past...
I don't expect folks to like everything I do. HELL, I don't even like SOME of it! (That stuff always sells well, though...) What I would LIKE, though, is for everyone to realize that they can and SHOULD make art, too. Eating, sleeping, sex, reading, playing games... These are all great, but they don't really express YOU very well, at least not in a way that will last very long or reach very many people. And things like technique and talent and "commercial potential" don't matter, either. That's not the kind of ART that I'm talking about. (Those things come as you specialize and learn a "craft," but they aren't essential to expression OR enjoyment.)
What matters is YOU making a mark on the world. Writing a story about your childhood for your kids or grandkids to read. Recording a song or video. Drawing or painting a picture---if it's bad, then have fun with it! Make it EXCRUCIATINGLY bad---so bad it's AWESOME! Share yourself with the world, not for money or fame or any of that junk, but so your family and friends can enjoy it. So people who you've never met can get a taste of who you are and what you think and feel and believe and love and enjoy doing.
ART is fun to make, fun to share. No pressure, just start simply. Try watercolors. (Super cheap. You might even have a set laying around the house already!) Or, if that's too messy or frustrating, move on to oil pastels or colored pencils or collage or poetry or knitting... It doesn't matter what you do as long as it's fun and fulfilling.
Because, if you have fun while you're making your arts, perhaps even making it WITH someone, then the people who encounter it later will also, undoubtedly, have fun experiecing it! The world becomes a better place, a HAPPIER and MORE CONNECTED place, when people share their art...even with complete strangers.
I recommend it. If you need suggestions or help, feel free to drop me a note! Helping people express themselves is what I do!!! Got it??? Good! Now go DO it!
---Richard F. Yates (Holy Fool)