1. Making Sense of the World

“Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.” – Groucho Marx

What are we really doing when we make art?

I personally believe (and I could be way wrong on this) that Mr. Orland was trying to convey the message that each of us no matter what walk of life we may take have a different way of “seeing” the world. Nobody is wrong or better than another person. It is simply the things that are more important to us. The mushroom farmer is obviously more concerned with finding mushrooms than how nice a piece of work in an art gallery looks. When making art one is simply putting their view of the world onto the paper. Challenges that arise may be that we are not yet “being ‘there’ in that place” meaning to our work, not having that experience yet. Art to me is 90% experience and 10% skill. I’d even go so far as to say that it’s 99% experience. All in all, it is very much trial and error or figuring out what does and doesn’t work.

~ D.Fell

Chapter 1 Sketches – 2017


7 Replies to “1. Making Sense of the World”

  1. when I make art, i am figuring something out in my head and/or expressing an interest. everyone makes arts for differnt reasons. But i think art is more then creating a physical thing. When i think of an idea that is totally new and i doubt anyone has ever thought before, i think its art. This is because, this idea forms a detailed picture in my head that could never be recreated by mere art supplies and “stuff”. Art can be so many more things th[a]n what we’re taught in school. Ted Orland tells us about his friend taging along with a mushroom hunter on his trek through the woods. This hunter knows exactly where he’s going and he knows what to look for because those woods are “his” world. He sees things clearly in his own realm, where the [mu]shrooms are. I know i see the world differntly then the person next to me. And i am pretty sure it’s that way to everyone else in the world. Differnt things are accented in everyones realm and what ever they see (how ever they see it) is usually connected to their art (if they make art).. or its connected to the thoughts they have. (which i think is also art).

  2. I think you have some very good thoughts as to what it is to “make” art. While it may be a challenge for me to assign an “A” to an art thought, the product is just a portion of the artmaking experience. There are a number of artists whose final products are not things you can get your hands on… they are boxes full of notecard ideas that someone else needs to physically do in order to create the art. Take, fo instance, the artist Sol Lewit (http://www.massmoca.org/lewitt/walldrawing.php?id=797) and his ideas specifically created for the completion by students and people OTHER than himself. Great ideas that he will never see in completion nor will they have the final results that he may have intended. That isn’t the point. The point is the idea. Good thoughts Carli… what else have you all to say about Chapter 1?

  3. (I am going to be blunt and make this obvious that I do not know what I am doing right now. I am not sure if we have to respond to the post above, or the chapter, so I’m going to do a little of both – well, more so my response to the chapter.)

    Carli – I really enjoyed how you connected one’s own thinking realm to how they make art, or even the fact that thinking in itself is an art form. I can relate very well to the idea that the image in my head is art because I am able to paint images in my head that I am unable to recreate with art supplies.

    Personally, Chapter one did very little in actually helping me “make sense of the world”, like I thought it would. I did grasp on to the fact that was reiterated multiple times – that creativity alone does not make art, seeing does – but I, unfortunately, was let down in my expectations for the chapter. Although I dove into the chapter knowing that this book was to help artists find their way in a world that doesn’t care, I was expecting something else – something that might have helped those who are not planning to persue art professionally.
    Other than that, I found the chapter interesting. I enjoyed the real world applications that were given to explain the messages Orland was given. I truly related to the last line of the chapter, and it made me stop and think about how my life would be different if I did not have all the experiences I have been exposed to. Although the book does not seem to be able to provide a lot of insight into my future, as I plan on persuing anesthesiology, not art, I feel this book will be able to share details of life that may help me on my way.

  4. I agree with Sara, in that I enjoyed how Carli made the connection of thinking to making art.
    This chapter, I believe, was a great starter for the book. I enjoyed that Ted Orland connected art making to “learning and remembering”. That is basically what we all do as artists when we let our creative minds run wild. We think of how it actually looks so that we have the ability to distort it to our liking, or reproduce an exact picture with the skills we have acquired throughout the years of technique improving. The artwork we make is almost meant to be analyzed and talked about in ways that ask, “what were they thinking?” The better question might be “what were they seeing?” All of our artwork has something personal involved into it, whether we know it, or not is the next question. But all of that has come from what we’ve witnessed in our lives and what has shaped our minds along the way. The image has now been sent from our brains to our media to create something that only that person can make based on their thoughts.

  5. I agree both with Carli and Sarah(simba). Carli, the points you bring up about the analogies are what I was thinking. I precieve art much differently than you or the person next to me, this is why an art work is a part of you. Every art work that you produce is going to be unique even if a group of people are drawing the same thing. Sarah, I agree to what you said about wating to find an insight to what art is and how to create it, and not really finding the answer in the book. I’m not going into an art profession but I still wanted to get a look at the process other artists use before they make their art so I can further my art making abilities. The analgies seemed more like fluff than anything, they were nice to read, but not too helpful in the ways of art making.

  6. I really like the point that Ted brings up that art is not a concrete thing. Art is different for everyone and unique for everyone. I also like the piont where he says that art is lik our own unique map that we have. Thevery last statement that is said in this chapter is something I totally agree with. We are experienced by our experiences. Because of these reasons and some other ones, I agree with Dustin that we do convey art in different ways and do have different wants and needs. And for those of us making art, What we put on our paper or canvus will be different. Thus how we interpret art will differ as well. I think orland did a wonderful job of his introductary paragraph and cannot wait to read more.

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