Thursday, 3 December 2009

Maybe I will draw instead

Shaun Tan writes about The Red Tree:

Originally I was planning to paint pictures about a range of emotions; fear, joy, sadness, amazement and so on. But the more I worked on this, the more I found the negative emotions - particularly feelings of loneliness and depression - were just much more interesting from both a personal and artistic point of view. Not that I’m an unhappy person, it’s just that these ideas seem to be utlimately more thought-provoking.

Readers have occasionally asked me why my imagery is often 'dark', and I think it’s because of this. I'm more attracted to those things that aren't quite right, like the social and environmental injustice in The Rabbits, or the social apathy of The Lost Thing, or even ideas about self-destruction in The Viewer. I find such things artistically engaging, perhaps because they are unresolved, like a puzzle.


I also like to draw dark things sometimes and I think Shaun Tan explains the attraction very well - mystery is compelling. Illustrators like Shaun Tan and Kit Williams make me feel like illustration isn't a "less real" form of art, it is just as thoughtful as fine art, but in a different way, a way that I like. Maybe I will try the illustration route.

--- Tick tock, I'm not a clock, but I need to sleep off this term and repair myself.

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