(Since writing this post Richard Schmidt has passed away. The outpour of love and gratitude displayed in the wake of his death has been epic. As I heard someone else say... he was the grand-mentor I never met but have come to know. He brought light to a world in need and it continues to shine. )
I want to share something that I learned from Tina Garrett (artist) that she learned from Richard Schmidt (artist). Tina tells it better but she's not here right now so you are stuck with me and my strict adherence to accuracy....
Once upon a time there was a brand new but already killing it artist named Tina. Tina was invited to the home of a wizard named Richard. He made magical things happen to blank canvases. Tina was looking at one of these magical canvases and commented on how Romantic (or Magical) or (something like that) the tree in the painting looked.
That is when Richard the wizard said something not very magical at all.
He said, "My dear that is nonsense."
Tina was afraid she had insulted the great wizard. He then said (something to the effect of)... "Don't look at the painting like a fan, look at it like an artist. Tell me what you see in practical terms."
Tina looked again. She noticed that though her mind told her she was looking at a green tree, everything was desaturated to the point that there were hardly any greens visible. She also noticed that there wasn't a hard edge on the entire painting aside from one or two lines in the trunk. She also noticed that though she knows the tree is full of pine needles, there were hardly more than a few rendered.
He then told her that all of the great wizards of the past gave away all of their secrets right in plain sight. "Everything you need to know is right there on their canvases".
And they all lived Happily Ever After, The End.
Pretty epic storytelling on my part, I think. Despite a glaring lack of dragons and not a single poisoned apple.
What the story lacks in deathtraps it makes up for in applicable wisdom.
Artists- look again. Every painting that you love... Look again. What do you love about it, How did the artists make it happen? What were the practical applications that manipulated your emotional response? Ask yourself questions about value, design, drawing, perspective, color, edges, opacity, thickness of paint ect. Think, don't just feel.
Those masters know exactly how to cast their spell. They know what they want to say and they know exactly HOW to say it. They know what they want you to feel and they construct that experience using tools from their not so magical paintboxes.
By working hard to see past the spell we can become casters of illusion ourselves.
And the world, of course, needs all the magic it can hold.
p.s. Tina thanks for the Story
p.s.s. Richard Schmidt, if you ever read this thank you for your contributions to the world's knowlege and beauty. Also, I hope you like wizards.