Tag Archives: art

What is art?

A short essay on art by Vaughan De Sousa

What makes truly great work is often not the work itself but the premise it stands on. To subvert reality is to create art which stands a level beyond ‘good’ or ‘impressive’ and has the ability to move people.
Is the purpose of art to move a person? Who knows. Art is already not a fully understood entity, and the purpose of an endeavour as intense as creating a piece of art one is proud of has deep psychological influence on the creator, even if this doesn’t reach the audience.

The Picture of Dorian Gray sees an artist put a piece of his soul into the painting he has created. An object of moral degradation used by its commissioner, but a creation of desire and connection. How art is used is somewhat meaningless once it passes from the artist to the surveyor. Try as we might, artists do not have the power to force their viewers into seeing their own vision. We will never see things the same way as another.
Sight, like every sense is built upon by experience. We are what we have been through, even if behind that we are the same. With our differing experiences we interact with the world, creating new visions every second. Does this invalidate the creator’s vision? Maybe. One could say that the value of an artist resides in their ability to create works which follow their intention, which transcribe the world from the brain of the madman to the eyes of the sane.

So then, could we argue that art is a language? Language is a method by which people relate their experiences with one another through a common understanding. We can never truly communicate our own world to another without a medium understood by both. This is because, as previously mentioned, there is no way for two minds to interact. Speech, signals, even expression define ways in which the living are able to relate their experiences. So too, in this way, does art describe an experience. We understand that which exists through the veil of that which is universally understood. Yet, art is able to provide an experience which is understood only by the creator.

Then does art not dictate reality? Maybe. Because what is reality other than what we define it to be. Let me explain; for us, the viewers, a piece of art may display nothing but an amalgamation of ideas, an expression on paper or a blur of half concepts. Yet to the artist this is a truth, a fundamental of their reality put into the universal world. A form of linguistic expression. The reality of this piece of work gains and loses substance depending on the surveyor, yet it exists! It is real, an expression placed into the observable reality. Meaning and value are nothing as art breaks the barrier of the mental ‘real’ and the physical ‘real’.

So then, what makes a piece of art great? I can only speak from personal perspective now; however, we have already seen that this does not invalidate my approach. Rather, this work that I put forwards is my own art. It is my expression of idea, understood by some and rejected by others but nevertheless a piece of my soul etched on paper.
I believe to move myself art must first break expectation. Whether that be in the initial glance, or scene or second, or at the end when a perspective shift changes everything. To create art which shatters the illusion of safety allows the individual to begin to ‘feel’. Before this we are simply running through the motions of experience. Everything changes us, but we are often not aware of it. Jarring processes allow introspection and a hasty desire of the brain to catch up to the new perspective, this provides a gap for art to flourish.

Think about art like waging a battle. Everything is connected of course, one could say: think about battle like performing a dance, or performing a dance like painting a picture. Everything is connected.
To win a battle at the highest level it is not enough to be perfect. Imagine two chess players of excellent ability coming to a head. To play perfectly allows the chance of winning so long as the other player makes a mistake. But these are human players. One can only think ahead so long. What if one were to play an unexpected and jarring move. The response can be a number of things: hasty, direct, winning, losing, cautious, optimistic… a previously perfect game is thrown into disarray with the introduction of a subversion from the norm. In art, there is no winning or losing, there is only the break from reality, and the chink the defences of our mind.

The surveyor is your dance partner, your enemy at war, your chess opponent and your audience. To slip past the defences created by a mind is to find the opening whereby a life can be forever altered. Sometimes this is easy. The surveyor has had a hard day, they have lost a family member, or they are ready to quit their jobs/lives. The armour is in tatters, the audience has come to the show begging for change, at this point to change one’s life is simple. We can relate an armour-less surveyor to a child. Experience weathers us, it creates layers or expectation which prevents art, and all other experience from changing who we are. Or better yet think of it like a river, causing erosion on a smooth surface. A rush of water down this surface will not change much regarding its path, as the path is already set in the ground. It may widen or deepen it, but there is no new course to be made.
The mind of a child is a pile of sand, and you the artist hold a bucket of water. You can shape this mind however you wish with the notches, grooves and streams that you may pour atop this pile of sand. And as the sand mixes with dirt and clay, the grooves you have created solidify. I hate to say with time, but that is what happens. Once the grooves are made they remain, slowly gaining in intricacy as other sources of water pour, and more sediment hardens the earth.

Everything is connected. You understand where I am going with this, I am sure. The ability for art to create or add to a stream is clearly there, but what is the joy in adding to a groove in the dirt. You want to make your own. Perhaps art is a forceful thing, the artist a dominant figure. I write this piece expecting a change in your mental state, you will change after reading this regardless of who you are or what you have experienced, if only through the fact that you will have read something. But as the creator I have changed you, moulded a tiny piece of your mind forever.
But what if I were to change this work here. And completely destroy your expectations. I am not a great artist, I do not know what I could do to do this, but imagine I place beneath this wall of text an image which shatters your illusion. A picture that shocks you to your core, making you rethink all you have read thus far.

This would be your chink in your armour. Following this shock I could place a few simple words. You may go away from this with a desire to make something new, or a fear of art and it’s grips on your soul. ‘Soul’. Mind.
With this new experience you will rework your mind, you will solidify what you have seen and heard around your personality. It will become a new groove in your earth. And you will continue on, with a line drawn into your life by me. The artist.

I believe that art, when great, stands on a premise and shatters it. I believe this allows the artist free reign of your mind. I believe that a truly great artist uses this moment to reshape you, like a clay doll being altered before being placed into a kiln.
Because death is the final point of hardening, you will not gain any experience (known by us) from then on. You are the finished piece of art upon your deathbed.

Art is not just a painting on a canvas or a clip of a movie scene. Art is the the experience, from the creator to the created. We shape ourselves and others when we form art. Art is a language, and is also every language. But then you may ask, what is the difference between art and ANYTHING ELSE.

Everything is connected.

Book Tuesday with Marje

Hello and welcome to Book Tuesday.

curse of the timeToday, I would like to introduce you to a fellow author, Majorie Mallon, whom I was fortunate enough to meet at the Bloggers Bash in London this year. Marje has been very busy with her new book, The Curse of Time – Book One – Bloodstone, and it is with great pleasure that I get to share her work with you.

Before we get to your book, please tell my readers a little bit about yourself.

 

I am a debut author who has been blogging for three years: https://mjmallon.com. My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, middle grade fiction and micro poetry – haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews: https://mjmallon.com/2015/09/28/a-z-of-my-book-reviews/

marje mallonAs a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations to visit my abacus wielding wayfarer dad. It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters. After such an upbringing my author’s mind has taken total leave of its senses! When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.

Now tell us about your new book, The Curse of Time – Book One – Bloodstone. What is it all about?

It is a YA/middle grade fantasy set in Cambridge, England exploring various themes/aspects: Light, darkness, time, shadows, a curse, magic, deception, crystals, art, poetry, friendships, teen relationships, eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety, depression, family, puzzles, mystery, a black cat, music, a mix of sadness, counterbalanced by a touch of humour.

Here is the synopsis of the story.

On Amelina Scott’s thirteenth birthday, her father disappears under mysterious circumstances. Saddened by this traumatic event, she pieces together details of a curse that has stricken the heart and soul of her family.

Amelina longs for someone to confide in. Her once carefree mother has become angry and despondent. One day a strange black cat and a young girl, named Esme appear. Immediately, Esme becomes the sister Amelina never had. The only catch is that Esme must remain a prisoner, living within the mirrors of Amelina’s house.

Dreams and a puzzling invitation convince Amelina the answer to her family’s troubles lies within the walls of the illusive Crystal Cottage. Undaunted by her mother’s warnings, Amelina searches for the cottage on an isolated Cambridgeshire pathway where she encounters a charismatic young man, named Ryder. At the right moment, he steps out of the shadows, rescuing her from the unwanted attention of two male troublemakers.

With the help of an enchanted paint set, Amelina meets the eccentric owner of the cottage, Leanne, who instructs her in the art of crystal magic. In time, she earns the right to use three wizard stones. The first awakens her spirit to discover a time of legends, and later, leads her to the Bloodstone, the supreme cleansing crystal which has the power to restore the balance of time. Will Amelina find the power to set her family free?
curse of the time

Marjorie has provided me with an exerpt from her new book, The Curse of Time – Book One – Bloodstone, to tantalise your reading taste buds! Enjoy.

Puzzle Piece 1: The Invitation

 Opportunity,

An unexpected invite,

Such a mystery,

To explore and discover,

A hidden cottage of light.

 I found it to be a mystifying situation. An unnatural stillness seemed to linger after many days of storms. Today, the sky reminded me of a painting. It appeared too perfect, too bright, too still, a picture landscape with no beginning or end. Instead, the vault of heaven spread out toward an endless grey forever, as if seeping around the edges of an untamed watercolour bleeding into the rest of the day. Even so, the sight filled my heart with promise, a ray of hope in an otherwise dull morning.

The quietness of my contemplation came to an abrupt end. I heard the sound of an envelope crashing through the mail box. I jumped at the clatter. The letter landed on the floor as the sound of a thousand crystal chandeliers echoed throughout the house. I rushed to retrieve the envelope and turned it this way and that. I couldn’t find an address label and wondered if the note had been hand-delivered. Who could this message be for?

I stood puzzling over this peculiar circumstance when out of nowhere my name: Amelina Scott appeared in bold writing. I watched wide-eyed as the final character of my surname was spelled out in a delicate font. I tore the dispatch open and inside I discovered a card printed on the finest paper with gilt edges and embossed calligraphy. There were few details, just an instruction to visit:

Crystal Cottage, River Walk, Cambridge, and the following added at the bottom as an afterthought: R.S.V.P – Not required. We promise to be welcoming when you arrive. When you’re ready, you’ll discover us…..

I shook my head in disbelief.  Nothing good ever happens to the Scott’s so this invitation might look magical, but surely it must be nonsense. Weird messages from unknown sources count as dubious junk mail, the way I look at it.

I grabbed the envelope and attempted to rip it into pieces, but it wouldn’t tear. With a mind of its own the envelope curled its edges in protest. I searched in a drawer until I found scissors and tried to cut the invite. That didn’t work either. My hand ached, but the invitation endured intact as if mocking me.

Frustrated, I tried to cut the invitation again. A sputtered cursing sound filled the room even though I was alone. On my third attempt, I tore into the card with success. (I think it let me.) And once again, I perceived a noise, an angry murmur, and then nothing. Quiet descended in the room, so I threw the torn parts into the bin.

Finally satisfied that the annoying issue with the strange invite would no longer plague me, I brushed my hands together, and picked an apple out of the bowl on the kitchen counter, polished it on my jumper and then took a bite. In no time my hunger had abated, and as I chucked the core towards the bin, I registered a chuckle. I stopped, my feet rooted to the ground as a feeling of certainty filled my soul. I knew what to expect. I have no idea how I did, but I could see the image in my mind, the invitation had reformed. The invitation was playing games with me! I peered in the rubbish, and there I saw the envelope, connected in one perfect, unblemished piece. What the heck?

Marjorie Mallon’s book, The Curse of Time – Book One – Bloodstone, is available now from Amazon. Links are listed below.

My Amazon UK Author Page

My Amazon US Author Page

My Amazon Canada Author Page

marje mallonMy blog – for information about new releases, photos of main characters/character interviews, book reviews and inspiration: https://mjmallon.com

My New Facebook Group #ABRSC: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook:

Instagram: Instagram:

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and Twitter: @curseof_time

Facebook: Facebook: m j mallon author

Tumblr: Tumblr: mjmallonauthor

I have devoted the past few years to writing over 100 reviews on My Goodreads Review Account, and on my blog to help support traditional and indie writers.

Thank you for joining me today and finding out about Marjorie’s book, The Curse of Time. As always, please leave a review for the author as it helps us to find more readers who enjoy our work.

Have a great day!

curse of the time

 

Book Tuesday: Trent’s World

Hello and welcome to Book Tuesday.

Weekly Smile #WeeklySmileThis week we are digging deep into a fellow blogger’s writing files and picking out wonderful stories that he has written over the past few years.  Trent from Trentsworld has been an inspiration to us all, creating his Weekly Smile to boost positive, humorous stories into our weekly digests. I have to add, his blog is a reason to make me smile every week.  With his constant support for 1000Voices, he tirelessly finds ways to post positive thoughts and words that motivate others to smile and feel happy.

Trent has been writing for many years and has a collection of stories for our delectable delight.  He has a few words to describe himself…

Although I often portray myself as a man of all arts, when you get right down to it I’m a writer of fiction. My character driven stories often have a bit of the fantastic to them and sometimes can be considered fantasy or science fiction. I’ll let you be the judge on how to classify them. 

Now, because I don’t want to drag you away from his actual blog page and I would encourage you to explore his work,  listed below will be a few links for stories from his page. Take your pick – they are all excellent.  I hope you enjoy them as much please, give Trent a lovely surprise and leave a message for him to let him know what an awesome writer/blogger/musician he is!

The Halley Branch

The Hamlet Symphny - Alt Image

It started as a dream.  It was strange and vague, as dreams often are, but I knew I had to use it for a story.  I wrote out the scene, changed from the dream, but realized it had to be part of a longer story.

That is how the Halley Branch started.

Fiction (No Discription)

Fiction

(Note – This has the same content as the main fiction page but there are no descriptions for the main stories.)

 

A New Life
A series of tongue in cheek stories about a poor, misunderstood creature. Most of these stories are all 750 words or less.

Please refer to the  “A New Life – AKA Frank” Page

I hope you give Trent’s blog a thorough read and find all the gems hidden within.  Let me know which story or blog is your favourite and don’t forget to let Trent know too!

Join me again next week when I will find an interesting book, blog or author to feature on Book Tuesday.  Thanks for joining me today.  Have a great evening.

Monday Coffee

I missed you!  Last week was very busy and I wasn’t able to join you for a coffee.  Instead, I posted a Monday Motivational from the wonderful Rose B. Fischer, to keep you company. Hopefully, it had the desired effect. I hope you’ve had a chance to visit Silver Threading’s Mindful Monday post to discuss ways to improve your health and well-being.

Why don’t we make our way to the coffee house tonight so that we can catch up with some friends.

It’sGoodToBeCrazy is handing out cupcakes and holding a Lifestyles link party at the moment.  It looks like quite a few interesting people have been linked.  Might be worthwhile going over for a quick coffee and meeting some new folk in the group.  Of course, there’s the advantage of those lovely cupcakes too!

Now that we have hobnobbed with the Lifestyle bloggers, let’s move onto another table. Ooo! Let’s go see Existentiallens‘s photogallery.  Nathaniel Gough has a wonderful selection of photographs capturing life in a most beautiful way. Kev from kcmusicnbooks is playing his new song, Elaine, that has been released on the 10th February this year.  That beautiful music is the perfect accompaniment to the photographs.

Right, shall we go sit with Teagan and Alex?  There is a special reason for this.  As you might know, my Hubble doesn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day.  The whole, “It’s a commercialized holiday” and “Why say it on one day of the year when we can say it any day we please?” are his usual responses to this special day.  Teagan and Alex have written posts that remind me why it’s so important to take any moment you get to celebrate your love for someone special. And I’m sure they wouldn’t mind the extra slices of cake we are taking to the table too!

Coffee or tea for you?

There are a few seats left.  Come on.  Let’s go!

 

 

Mihran Kalaydjian Playing Beauty Beauty – OV SIRUN SIRUN

This haunting melody had to be shared. Mihran Kalaydjian delivers another wonderful piece of music that has inspired me to write a poem for it. I will post it later. In the meantime, please enjoy his wonderful music.

Mihran Kalaydjian's Official Blog

Mihran Kalaydjian Playing Beauty Beauty – OV SIRUN SIRUN

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_b1RjMEEX8

Mihran Kalaydjian Playing Beauty Beauty – OV SIRUN SIRUN

Lyrics by Levon Mirijanyan
Arranged by: Erik Sahakyan
Produced & Mixed by: Nick Egibyan
Directing by: K.S.

Mino Element Band Members

Aram Kasabian – Lead Guitar
Sevan Manoukian – Drummer
Hratch Panossian – Bass
Samer Khoury – Violin
Tony Amer – Saxophone
Haim Cohen – KeyBoard
Albert Panikian – Trumpet
Nicole Del Sol – Percussion
Dana Debos – Trombone

Lyrics:

S Sirun Sirun … (About Beauty Beauty)
Inchu Motetsar? (Why You Came?)
Srtis Gahnike (the secret of my heart with very)
Inchu Imatsar? (Why did you know?)
Mi Anmeh sires, (innocent love)
EU Kez Syrets … (I love you)
Bayts Du Anirav Davachanetsir … (But You Ruthlessly devotees)

Oh ETE closely Orerits Mi Hur (Oh if one day I’ll see)
Du Manes Galis Thur have Molor … (you walk a lonely…

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Saturday Night Confessions Reminder

Join me later tonight when I reveal…well I don’t know yet.  Still pondering on what I feel like sharing with you.

Any suggestions, questions or something burning inside of you that you’d love to know about me? Leave a comment and I shall promise to try answering it as honestly as possible.

Okay now I’m nervous!  



See you later.  Oh and if no-one leaves a question, I will just have to go with whatever comes to mind!  

Pic courtesy of Giphy.com and animationgraphics.com

Late night coffee

It is with great pleasure that I share my coffee blog with you from a live location with an actual blogger sitting across from me! Yes, I was lucky enough to meet an author, blogger and friend for a Starbucks coffee earlier this evening after hobnobbing with wonderful intellectuals at a special workshop targeting the enhancement of Southern African countries. It was Lance Greenfield, author of Eleven Miles, who invited me to come along to this event and get a chance to promote my work to fellow Southern Africans.

The event was a success and I got to meet a variety of talented people in their own right. Lance was in his element chatting about his book and his friend Boikanyo who was one of the organisers. We were lucky enough to meet the Mayor and chat to him about literature, his term in office and the wonderful things he has achieved. His positivity and support for the evening was felt by all.

After exchanging details and promising to keep in touch with new found friends, we headed back to our lovely Bershire, but of course we had to make one special stop…at a local coffee house! It felt surreal to sit across from a fellow blogger and chat freely about things we could only get across in short bursts of conversation over the Internet. Lance chose a panini and coffee Americano whilst I stayed true to my classical hot chocolate and BLT. After filling our tummies and chatting incessantly, it was time to jump back into the car to continue the two hour journey back to my house.

Lance, ever the gentleman, saw me to my door, delivering me safely into the awaiting arms of the Hubble and munchkins. Promises we made for more coffee meet ups and hopefully a dinner too and Lance continued on his hour long journey to get home.

Thank you Lance for including me in your special day and I hope that the friends we met today stay in contact and I wish them every success in promoting the Southern African culture and heritage for the future generations. Best of luck to Lance and Boikanyo on their fantastic book and I am sure it will be a great success.

And of course to all my fellow bloggers – I missed you tonight and wished you could have been there with us for the coffee, the chats and the laughter. Today has inspired me to work hard so that one day I can throw a huge coffee meet up and invite you all from around the world to join us.

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Coffee or Tea? Come Visit With ME!

Let’s go meet Silver Threading for a catch up cup of coffee or tea. I love her bit strips that bring our little world to life…

Word Craft Poetry

Colleen and Eloise at coffee shop 2

My amazing friend Eloise, from Thoughts By Mello-Ello, has invited me to coffee so many times that I had to follow up and invite her, and all the rest of you, to join us in a good old fashioned cup of coffee or tea.  Here are Eloise and I right now, in the photo above, talking and enjoying our coffee.  Come on in!  Eloise is the author of a fabulous book called “Deception.”  Have you read it?

Our coffee shop has the best coffee around and also the best tea.  It is here that I come to enjoy a nice hot cup of P.G. Tips Tea, imported straight from England.  I add a bit of light almond milk and a pinch of Stevia.  Eloise is having a rich, smooth Colombian blend coffee with frothy cream on top.  How do you like your tea or coffee?  Get your…

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Happy #Wensfriesday!

It’s going to be an arty #Wensfriesday today folks. I’m meeting up with a friend who has taken up the yoke to join me in creating the world of LeBrush for my story, A Tale of Knots. I’m pretty excited to see her sketches and get a chance to talk to a creative person who has her own collection of stories waiting to be released to the world.

Apart from my weekly coffee dates with you lovely folks, I don’t have access to many writers in the physical sense and it can be pretty lonely at times when all I want to do is go crazy and dream up different worlds with someone else. Don’t get me wrong, I love spending time with you here, but I do crave flesh and blood and an immediate reaction that I can see and not imagine when I discuss different topics. Well, I hold out on the hope that I will get to meet some of you in person one day and share that cup of coffee with you and a lovely long chat…and some cake!

Speaking of cake and all things sweet, I have to make a Blackforest Trifle for a special couple who are renewing their vows this weekend. There will be around sixty guests attending and I have to make sure there will be a big enough trifle to go around! Not a problem…I might make two!

Now numbers remind me that this is a very special #Wensfriesday for another reason – it is my Godson’s sixth birthday today and I will get to see him later for afternoon tea. He is a fantastic footballer and absolutely loves the game. I guess that is soccer to some of you. ☺️

Of course, we can’t discuss our midweek break without mentioning the sweetie of the day. Last week was hazelnut chocolate and Kinder surprises. This week might be something to share, like a slab of Dairy Milk chocolate. I don’t think the children will mind if I steal a square before they come home from school!

Have a lovely midweek break everyone and don’t forget to tell me what you’re having as your special #Wensfriesday treat. xxx

Coffee Catch Up

It has been a rather snowy day and as the last store closes, the dusk advances silently. The coffee house is not as full as usual – it might be the time I’ve chosen to visit. My Darjeeling tea is piping hot and I dare not sip it just yet for fear of scalding my tongue.

Trent was showing me pictures of Fiyero, Josephine and Albert and we spotted Lance pull up with a bus load of Bloggers and a musician! The coffee house warmed with the new guests and the sound of hot steamy foam fizzing and coffee beans grinding melted into the cacophony of voices and laughter. Colleen had a secret smile and when I asked her what was up her sleeve, she told me about her adventures with the Swamp Fairies. I could tell the crowd around us were listening, because the noise sank to a whisper as her tale unfolded.

Diana came to join us, sharing her tale of circuses and hurdles coming up in the weeks I ahead. Tooty lightened the mood with his humorous earplugs and Rochan caught my eye. He was replacing the art on the wall with new photos he had taken. The soft lilting music of Mihrank and his band filtered through the coffee house and the noise of raised voices in conversation lowered as people found their seats to listen to the lovely music.

I sighed and watched the beauty and culture around me, happy to be amongst people that are making their mark on the current world in a positive way. Yes, this is the reason for a good coffee house!

I haven’t had a chance to tag anyone in this post, but I am hoping you will take the time to visit The blogs I follow. There are so many more that I enjoy and haven’t had a chance to mention. Sending a big wave to you all. Come join me for a coffee soon. 😊