Posts Tagged ‘art’

Free Art

Yay you came here for free art. I’m glad that caught your attention.

The internet is a valuable tool for artists. It provides a means to get our work in front of many eyes. Whether it is a personal website or social media. It is good practice to post to social media on a regular basis. Not posting means that we no longer exist. As an artist you can get forgotten about very quickly.

The unfortunate side of the internet is thievery. Many feel that if they find an image on the internet it is automatically free. Free to use anyhow they please. Download it, right click on it, save it to their hard drive. It is very easy to do. For this reason many artists put gaudy watermarks on their images to help “protect” themselves. I do not watermark. I find them to be highly intrusive. I shouldn’t have to work hard creating an  aesthetically pleasing image just to plaster it with what people should already know. It’s my image, I created it, I own the rights to it forever. So instead of watermarking let’s educate. Taking an image from the internet without some form of consent is stealing.

Let me step back a little. I have had many of my images used commercially without my knowledge and/or I found them by searching or by just pure coincidence. When I confront the entities they immediately get defensive. They even go as far as ridiculing me and the image. It makes me laugh. If the image sucked, then why are you wanting to make yourself look bad? The truth is they used the image because they liked it. It spoke for them. It represented them. They tried to get something for free. My work, my time, my equipment. Nobody wants to work for free. Most people working for a corporation would not need to write a blog on this subject. Why? Because most people get compensated in a timely manner for their performance.

Another common response is, “You put it on the internet, it’s public, the whole world sees it.” Yep, it is very public. So are the city streets. This logic says that if I park my nice car on a public street it is free for the taking. It could be taken, but there are consequences. There are consequences to stealing images. There are laws against it that stand up in court just as heavily as stealing a car monetarily. Therefore regardless of justification, the law says you cannot do it. All images are protected whether there is a watermark, copyright symbol, fine print, etc. or not.

Most people wouldn’t walk into a grocery store and steal a banana. A banana seems harmless, what damage would come to the store for stealing one banana? Most people don’t think about it and wouldn’t steal period. That same logic needs to be applied to art and artists.

Artists need your support. Which means don’t take an image without consent. Don’t ask an artist for free work, yes, this applies to family and friends. Free art means someone is working hard and not getting paid. Don’t ask an artist for a discount. The art is already cheap. Not really a proud bragging right. ” I got this at a killer discount.” Insert sad face. You are investing in that artist. Every time you buy a piece of real art from an artist the value of that art and artist goes up. You can’t get that value from Ikea, Bed Bath and Beyond, or Target. There is zero value in purchasing “wall coverings” from these types of places. When you buy real art, original art, you are buying value and something that is one of a kind. Be original, buy original. Be proud you paid asking price, brag on that. Say no to free art.

Buy local. San Diego is a great art city. Start going to the many shows and open receptions. You will be amazed and pleased. If you don’t know much about art, you don’t need to. Go to a show, just look. What catches your eye? Why does it catch your eye? How does it speak to you? Art speaks, it doesn’t need to match your sofa, it needs to match you. A great place to start looking for shows is at ArtGuideSD.

I did not post any photos to this blog for fear they would be stolen.

Paul W. Koester is a San Diego based artist specializing in urban and landscape photography.

Check’s In The Mail

Like all artists I enjoy selling art. Of course I like getting paid for what I do. It’s the world we live in. Everything costs money. So when I sell a piece I am happy for two reasons. I am getting paid for what I love to do and I am making someone happy. This means that I spoke to someone through my art, it doesn’t get any better than that!

Recently I received an email from a lady in Ohio. She discovered her husband looking at my website. There are worse things you can discover your husband looking at online. So again I took that as a compliment. She wanted to know what inspired me and asked questions about a particular image that I created. I kindly and thoughtfully took the time to respond to all of her questions. We had a bit of back and forth dialogue over the last couple weeks.

Bad Check

Show Me The Money

A couple days ago I received this nice check FedEx’d to my studio. Sweet!! Right? Ummm not so fast. Let’s backup this a little bit. By the second email I knew immediately that this was a scam. I have had people try to run check scams on me in the past so I knew what was happening. I play along because I want these people busted. I loathe these people!! So in a nutshell what they do is butter you up. Try to gain your trust, ask about you, act all interested. Then comes the crazy story. I want this for my husband for our 10 year anniversary, I want it to be a surprise. He takes care of all the finances so I am having my assistant write a cashier’s check. I am moving to the Philippines, so I am having a shipping company handle all my affairs. It goes on and on. Sounds really legit actually. So here’s the part where they screw you over. The fine art print I was selling had the price tag of  $500. So that means the check is written over for the amount of $800. When I go to cash the check, the “extra money” minus my costs goes to the shipping company. When the check bounces, I am out the $800. The con artist then pockets the $800. I knew from the second email that this was the game that was being played. I contacted the credit union and verified that this was a scam. The check is counterfeit.

Most of these scams originate over seas. They are getting better at it now. Using addresses within the US. Their English is better, i.e. writing and spelling. They are using common names. So as a warning be careful. If you sense something is wrong, then something is wrong. If it is too good to be true, be careful.

As an artist I work very hard to put a quality product out there that will sell. I do this full time. This is my sole source of income. So it pisses me off being a target to a scam. It pisses me off that artists as a whole are targeted. We are targeted not just by scams but also to offer up our services for free. This happens all the time. Not just from family and friends, large companies as well.

The film industry and agencies make up all sorts of excuses and promises, “We have no budget, but we would like to place your art in several scenes.” Ummm, no budget? How is that possible. Does that mean you have no money, or so much money that you decided not to budget it? I don’t know. I just saw this today in an art community. Don’t fall for it!!! Exposure, possible future work! It never comes, it is a scam!

The point is artists need to be paid. If you like it, or love it, then pay for it! We work very very hard for very very little. Our prices are already dirt cheap. Nothing I create was free for me to create. My supplies, my rent, utilities, etc., and my time all cost me a lot of money. So how can I simply give anyone my work for free? No artist can.

Confidence

What is confidence? How do you obtain it? Better yet, how do you teach it? Good questions. All with varying or even elusive answers. We all struggle with it at times. Some more than others and seemingly there are those who have obtained all the confidence in the world.

As an artist I often struggle with confidence. Not so much in my abilities, more in my confidence in surviving in the vast wprld of artists. I am but a speck in a huge sea of talent and creativity. How do I shine? How do I stand out? How do I get noticed? Yet at the same time I do what I can to not dwell on that much. It is a waste of time for my thoughts and energy to waste away on that which really is not realistic. If we all thought, “Well, there are an awful lot of artists out there, I don’t see myself succeeding. So I am not going to be an artist.” That then is an admission of defeat from the beginning.

Opportunity

“Opportunity” By Natasha Myrick

I believe in persistence. I have been persistent for several years. Putting my work out there. Growing, bettering myself, posting, blogging, etc. I could have easily given up based on feedback or the lack thereof on my Facebook posts, Google + posts, etc. If I were to compare myself to others, then I should quit. I should throw in the towel based on the numbers.

Don’t look at the numbers, don’t look at the stats! They mean nothing! What matters? If you are posting something, your art, a photograph, your passions, then that means you believe in that. You enjoy, love, what you do and you post it. What matters is that you feel it is important. It mattered when you shared it with the world and it still matters! What matters to you is truly all that matters, do not forget that!

Had I given up, I would not have my work hanging at the amazing Incredible Artist Gallery  in Cathedral City, CA. Had I given up, I would not have met many amazing artists who today I call friends! Had I given up, I would not be writing this blog and you wouldn’t be reading it.

Had I given up, I would not have had the opportunity to mentor 14 year old Natasha Myrick. Due to my ties with the Incredible Artist Gallery, I was given an awesome experience to meet the Myrick family at the beautiful Colony 29 in Palm Springs, California. The Myricks were brought out here to California to give their 5 year old son Liam the experience of a lifetime. Liam was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma when he was only 3 years old. Needless to say the lives of the Myricks has been hectic, many ups and downs. Their time here in California was meant to create an up that would be part of their memories forever. For me it was a wonderful experience getting to meet all of them! Playing with Liam and his 8 year old sister Natalie. Watching them paint, play, swim, and simply enjoy life without worrying about anything for a few short days.

Look What I Did!

“A Proud Moment” Natasha proudly stands before her works at the Gallery 446 in Palm Springs, California. Image created by Paul W. Koester

A good portion of Liam, Natalie, and Natasha’s stay in Palm Springs was spent preparing for their very own art show at Gallery 446 in Palm Springs, California. Natalie and Liam created paintings to sell at the gallery to raise money for Liam’s medical expenses.

Natasha is the oldest of the Myrick siblings. She has not had it easy. With Liam’s numerous hospital visits, being the oldest means having the most responsibilities. She doesn’t live the typical life of a teenager, yet she doesn’t complain. She understands and loves her little brother. Yet through all of that there is a creative side to Natasha that strives to be revealed, it has been suppressed. I discovered that talent as I mentored Natasha and helped guide her in creating some pretty amazing photos.

The Light

“The Light” image created by Natasha Myrick

Grandma's Promise

“Grandma’s Promise” Image created by Natasha Myrick

Natasha's Reflection

“Natasha’s Reflection” Taken while on a photo walk in Palm Springs, California. Image created by Paul W. Koester

Here is where this whole thing comes full circle. How do you teach confidence? The moment Natasha and I picked up our cameras, Natasha began saying to me, “I can’t do this.” “I am not good enough.” Lots of negativity was sensed. It was strong enough that I thought to myself, “I am not going to be able to teach her.” How do you teach something to someone who is this critical of themselves? I knew some of her intimidation was derived from me. So instead of addressing her insecurities I had her shoot away. I lead by example and just started taking pictures of the surrounding area.  She asked questions and I answered. My words were simple to her, “just have fun”. In my opinion that is lesson number one with photography have fun, then learn, always have fun. Setting her mind at ease was important to me. Being overly critical of our inadequacies does very little to help improve ourselves. Recognizing them, yes, that is important, but then move on and work on improving. How do you improve? Well that is simple too. Look back at those things that intimidated you. Are they as intimidating now as they were back when you were first introduced to them? Did you improve? Chances are good you did. Due to that knowledge, now know that you can do that again, and again, and again.

Soon I saw a change in Natasha. I saw her relax. She began to enjoy being behind the camera. I watched her get lost in the moment. That’s the golden moment, getting lost, that is when you truly create. As you can see she created some amazing images that she has every right to be proud of. Together we edited the images and Natasha gave them titles that she felt from her heart. While Natasha was out getting ready for the gallery showing I went and had them printed and framed. The next time she saw her images, they were prominently hanging on the walls of Gallery 446. What a proud moment! I was proud of her as was everyone else, simply amazing!

Natasha's Creations

“Natasha’s Creations” Beautiful images created by Natasha Myrick hanging on the walls of the Gallery 446 in Palm Springs, California. Image created by Paul W. Koester

Paul and Natasha

Paul and Natasha at the Gallery 446 in Palm Springs, California. Image created by Rick Pantele

Believe Tree

“Believe Tree” an amazing and beautiful tree with words of encouragement, inspiration, and motivation written on it’s branches. Image and design created by Paul W. Koester

Believing in yourself is the key to confidence. It starts with us. If we don’t believe then how can others? Never underestimate yourself or doubt yourself! We all go through it and we all need to be reminded of our self worth. Chances are good others will not remind us of our self worth, we have to do it for ourselves. When others are down on themselves I do what I can to encourage them and remind them of how talented they are and how important they are. As an artist I know what it is like to be down and have those dark moments when things just seem like they are not coming together the way I would like. The doubts creep in, we all need reminders that we are better than that! We all need from time to time reminders that we need to BELIEVE IN OURSELVES!! The Believe Tree is a beautiful and amazing tree with words of encouragement, inspiration, and motivation written on its branches. It serves as a visual reminder that we can get through and overcome any challenge. Quite often that biggest challenge is convincing ourselves that we are good enough.

A Novel Idea – Part II

Werewolf

An Animated and automated werewolf sculpture I designed and fabricated.

(Continued from Part I) I started out in A Novel Idea Part I telling part of my story about where I came from. Now I will share with you where I am going.

My novel idea is unique. It should be scary. Few would do it, let alone consider it. For many, their next move is finding that next company to to work for. To me that is equally scary! I on the other hand have had it in my mind for several years to start my own business.  Actually I have been a part time small business owner for a couple years. I have been laid off before and I have run my own business in the past. I know what it like to be my own boss. It is very hard work, but it is also extremely rewarding. I know what I am capable of and I know my limitations.  So over the last several years I have been working hard to brand myself.  I think it has paid off. If you Google me, there I am, right on top of the searches. I have primarily branded myself as a photographer. However I am also a painter, illustrator, and sculptor, and etc. I do wear a lot of hats. I like being versatile. Though the world seems to have a hard time grasping a person with so many hats. Therefore for the moment I am Paul W. Koester the photographer. I do love photography. I always have since I was a young boy and I would expect that I always will. No matter what, it ties in with everything I do.  For me photography is ever evolving. It has taken me to new levels and has helped me conquer many of my fears. Through photography I have met some amazing people and have been part of some amazing events!

Koester Productions is my official business name, it encompasses all the various aspects of what I am capable of offering. Not just Paul W. Koester Photography, but also Paul W. Koester the engineer.  I have also tied Artist Perspective to my name and website. Some feel that I get buried in that name. I totally see their view and at times I feel that I should have done that differently. I guess I wanted something that spoke to me about me being an artist and my perspective on the world.

Caged

The setting sun under the Ocean Beach Pier.

Ultimately my end goal is to create for Hollywood or private entities. To provide them with one of a kind sculptures or props. Due to my background in sculpture, metal work, carpentry, welding, electronics, instrumentation, and programming. I get to combine all of those skill sets with my creations to make them not only one-of-a-kind but also animated and automated. To create and challenge my mind this way is the ultimate fun!!  I would do these things for free, this is my passion. However we live in a world where we must make money to survive and very little is free. My supplies are not free, it can be very expensive being a creative person, but I don’t dwell on that very much.

I feel pretty fortunate to be where I am right now. I know that might come across as sounding a little weird coming from a guy who was recently laid off. What I mean by that though is a lot of really good things have come my way in the last year or so. One very significant event occurred early in 2013. I was discovered by Rick Pantele via my facebook page who ran the Incredible Artist art gallery in Cathedral City, California. He was very interested in a few of my images. We ended up creating a huge 9′ x 4′ diptych of  All The Right Reasons (see photo on right) which is hanging predominantly in Pasadena, California at the Kaiser Permanente corporate office inside their main lunch/conference room. After that job was complete, we created a few more images for the gallery. I sold several pieces through the gallery and via online sales. Rick knows my situation well and as I write this we are working together on several very exciting business opportunities.

Kaiser

All The Right Reasons hanging in the Kaiser Permanente office in Pasadena, California.

Earlier this year I met Matthew Shuey on Google+ and was introduced to the new business he and Theresa Puerto were starting involving stock photography. I had been very interested in doing stock photography and was looking for an entry point. I enjoy dealing with start-up companies. I like being on the ground floor of a company and growing as the company grows.  Matthew and Theresa started Gen StockPhoto as a result of seeing a need in their web design business. They discovered that there is a huge deficit for quality stock images. Then they also took notice to the fact that many stock image agencies do not respect their contributors, primarily the photographers who work very hard and often spend a lot of money in order to create the image. Gen StockPhoto pays out a whopping unheard of 70% of the license fee, additionally they give 100% of the fee for commissioned assignments to the photographer. I am pleased and excited to be a part of this business, which I believe is going to be a very fun adventure! It is already growing quickly and is already home to many talented photographers.

There are many things that I am working on at this time. All of which will evolve and develop and become something very fun and cool. Many of you are looking out for me and sharing ideas and send me links or contacts. Keep them coming!! I am very grateful for all that you do and appreciate the fact you care and want me to succeed!!

As you create your very own personal novel idea. It starts with believing in yourself. You must believe when no one else will. Then just do, don’t look back, continue pushing forward, just create, express yourself, and do not be afraid!

A Novel Idea – Part I

Life is a novel that is written as we go. We add to the pages each and everyday. Over time, eventually, gradually, it becomes the story of us, who we are, what we’ve done, and what we are yet to do.  We are a piece of history, each of us contribute to the legacy. In a sense a new novel is redundant to say, being that the word novel actually means new. For me as of right now it is applicable being that I am now writing a new novel. I am entering into something that is quite new, a new beginning, a new start. Unlike adding a new chapter to an old book. I am starting a new book with a new title, a novel idea.

PLC Panel

An Instrumentation Panel that I designed and fabricated. In a sense, my art.

My last day at a company I worked at for over 10.5 years came on June 30, 2014. I walked in, was escorted by security, signed a paper, said a couple goodbyes, and that was about it. For me saying goodbye wasn’t the part that mattered to me. The events that occurred from the day I was hired up to my last day are what truly mattered. The people I met and the things I learned along the way are what are valuable to me. Many will be my friends for life, we were a family. We worked together, we set goals together, we struggled, we conquered, and we lost together. We shared our lives with each other. In the end, the company we worked hard to build was sold. All the things we did together to create a business that had meaning and purpose was taken from us and given to someone else who knew nothing about what we did to make it what it was. Sure they read the newspaper articles and had all the documentation, but they did not feel what we felt. At the end of the day, that is what matters. What do you feel? Is it purposeful, does it have meaning? Are you making a difference? Are you happy? The last couple of years the answer to each of those questions was a resounding no!

The Passage

The passageways of my former life.

In the last quarter of 2008 we went through a very large reduction in force. My good friend and boss Dan Cooper was also let go during this lay off. It was a very disappointing and difficult day for many of us. We were reminded how vulnerable we were and how quickly life can change. This became a pivotal moment in time.  After Dan left I had to work for people at the company who really did not know me, they did not know where I came from, they did not watch me grow the way Dan did. Dan and I started our relationship in 1990. We met during Navy Electronics school in Orlando, Florida. So we have a pretty solid history of working together that is very unique and personal. My new bosses did not even know me, at all. They did not know my capabilities. Likewise with my fellow co-workers, who found themselves in a similar situation. The people that hired us were gone. The slate was wiped clean. Our new bosses did not know us, they were forced to take us on, and to no real fault of their own did not have the same appreciation for us as those who hired us. Sure they asked us questions and walked around and looked at what we did, but they knew nothing about us. Our value diminished day-by-day. Within a couple years we learned quickly that we were being prepped for a take-over by a much larger international corporation. Morale was at a all time low and our day-to-day activities were few due to the many changes. Very few projects were taken on. My work in particular revolved around projects, expansion, and growth. As an Instrumentation & Controls Engineer for the company I got to do some really cool stuff! Much of what I did, few understood or cared to understand, they just knew I did it. They let me do what I needed to do as I saw fit as it applied to the needs of the company. Again it was largely in part due to my original boss knowing me and knowing my capabilities. He trusted me and that trust built confidence.  I took on responsibilities that were typically sent to outside vendors and contracted out. I saw a need and I saw that it could be done better. Whenever and wherever possible I applied my creativity to my job, in that environment it was my art. It kept my mind and my hands busy. When all of that began to change, it became very difficult to get up in the morning and go into work. It was torture being there.

Fortunately over the last year or so I was given certain liberties to work on my next career move. Being that my next career move was much different than other’s this meant spending considerable time on social media, networking and branding myself. So what exactly is my next career move? Here is where one book ends and my novel idea begins. (to be continued in Part II)

 

Vernon Finney

 

The Creator by Vernon Finney

“The Creator” An intricately intensely detailed masterpiece depicting creation and the amazing power of the mind.

 

It has been a little over a year since I first saw the work of Vernon Finney. Giclee prints of some his paintings were hanging near some of my photographs in the Incredible Artist Art Gallery located in Cathedral City, California in the Palm Springs area.

Vernon Finney

Vernon signing a printed copy/pamphlet of “The Seven Days Of Creation” a seven piece painting depicted the first chapters of the book of Genesis.

The Starmaker by Vernon Finney

“The Starmaker” an amazing painting depicting the creation of the universe.

Vernon’s art stands out sharply from everyone else’s art, as good art should. I’m no great art expert. I did not study art. I took a few art classes. However I am privileged to have seen first hand the works of Michelangelo, Monet, and many others. Walking where Michelangelo walked doesn’t make me anything special. However, regardless, every now and again we get the opportunity to cross paths with people that are not part of the mainstream crowd. In my opinion these things happen for a reason and have significant purpose. When you meet them you instantly know they are something special, you know they are a gift and are gifted, and you want to absorb as much of them as possible. Vernon Finney is one of those people. A modern day, living breathing Rene Magritte, a friend who is a Salvador Dali. Though I did not meet any of the great artists of the day, I am happy to say that I have met Vernon Finney and I am very content with that. Vernon celebrated his 90th birthday in May of this year. Much of his 90 years has been packed full of adventure and loving life. Whether climbing some of the highest mountains, painting celebrities homes, running the art department in a leading advertising agency or creating amazing masterpieces of art. He was always up to the challenge. Though he drew and sketched most of his life.  In the 60’s Vernon began sketching and drawing in a manner that stood out from everyone else. He found his groove sort-of-speak. It was the 60’s after all. I sat down and pored over several of his worn out tattered sketch books from that period. So many ideas. So enlightened.  He was ahead of his time, with the open mindedness and the ideas that he expressed freely. Ahead of his time in a way that people just were not ready for his style of art, the good thing is he did not let any of that stop him. He is bothered very little if any at all by what other people think. Today the world needs the art of Vernon and it is finally ready. We need something that grabs a hold and pops and is original! His paintings are as original as original gets. Vernon grew up poor in Oklahoma. Coming from a conservative family, he wasn’t allowed to freely express his creativity. Today Vernon believes in “Just get out there and do it, don’t worry about it.” He believes in creating and freeing the mind and doing that often. I told him “I don’t want to be the best, I just want to be better. I don’t ever want to be in a place where I think I am the best.” He replied quickly, “Don’t worry about that, you become better by doing. As long as you are doing, you will get better and the rest will all fall into place.” I believe what he said is very true and I will do my best to practice that philosophy.

Reach by Vernon Finney

“Reach” in its full glory. An epic work of art that speaks volumes without capturing a single facial expression. Must be seen to comprehend this enormous wonderful work of art!

I stayed at Vernon’s, Cathedral City home for three days in late June and was given the opportunity of a lifetime. Spending time with the master was a privilege of epic proportions. We went shopping together, ate at an Italian and Mexican restaurant, and he cooked dinner for me. We even went to see Maleficent in 3D at the Mary Pickford Theater! Yes, we had a very good time indeed. Best of all we talked! We found common ground. He gave me advice and also reinforced what I already know and what I am already practicing. The several things that we spoke on that I would like to pass on to everyone who reads this is 1. Believe In Yourself! 2. Get rid of fear! 3. Get out there and do it! 4. Don’t LOOK back!! 5. Don’t Give Up!!!

Vernon_Finney_Drawing_SM

Sketches for Vernon’s latest work titled “Who’s Afraid Of Mary Jane?” A piece that will cast a light upon female injustice and affliction.

Vernon started painting full time around the age of  5o. He came to the place in his life where he felt that it was time to do what he was passionate about. In his lifetime he has painted over 400 oil paintings. Some he was commissioned to create, others he sold, and some he gave away. Some have been lost and he is trying to recover them. Several pieces are being looked at to go to either private collections or to hang in major galleries throughout the country. Up until my recent visit I had not seen any of Vernon’s original paintings. I have now seen over 30 of them. I have my favorites: Memories, Reach, and The Creator. Many of these took several years to paint. Reach took about 4 years to create, it is a huge painting 10′ x 9′, that’s 90 square feet! Many of his paintings are big. Bigger than life! This way it gets the message across, it has more impact. The great artists did the same thing. Vernon’s work can be considered thought provoking, surreal, and controversial. He is a modern day surrealist painter, when you see his work it will leave an indelible mark upon the thought processes of your mind!! Meet the man as I have and you will forever be changed. My short blog doesn’t do him justice. Keep an eye on Vernon Finney he is the next big thing! I look forward to hanging out some more with my new friend!

Art In The Eye

The age old adage is “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” which has been modified by some to be “Art is in the eye of the beholder.” Which I suppose is partially accurate. More on the true side of things if a piece is for sale and the artist truly wants to make a sale. Less true if it is solely art.

Art for me is, “An expression of that which is within us! It is a release of energy from the soul that expresses itself and manifests itself into what we call art.”

This Is Art!!!

This Is Art!!!

What that means is,  it doesn’t need to be pretty, acceptable, perfect, correct, easy on the eyes, within the guidelines, categorized, likable, or desirable. It can be all those things, but it will unlikely be all those things or any of those things for everyone. So if only two people like a piece of art, how different is it
if two million people like a piece of art? Is it any less art? Maybe it is more of an art form because it has more critics than those that like it.

The saying should really read, “Art is art in the eye of the artist and not the beholder.”  It is the artist who made it art because it is an expression of themselves and the manifestation of that which is within them.

We will always have the critics which means we will always have art, they go hand-in-hand.  There will always be those who enjoy pointing out the obvious. Maybe the photograph I posted somewhere was out-of-focus, or under exposed, or over exposed, or whatever. As if it were a complete blunder on my part to publicly display something so horrendous. In the end it just makes me laugh, maybe not totally out loud, but at least I smile. The reason I can do that is because it is an expression of myself and nobody else. Yes, I intended it to be that way. Why? Because, the rules and boundaries do not need to always apply. They can and will be bent and broken.

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