I like this. For so long, I've been trying to figure out what the best way to communicate my feelings would be, and I thought, "Why can't I do this with art?" This comic explains how. If I were to even try to express these deep feelings through my drawings, they wouldn't make sense unless they were carried out in a way someone could understand - or at least in a way that they could interpret on their own. Maybe they won't feel the exact same things I felt while making it, but if it touches their heart somehow, or if they understand it even a little bit... That's an accomplishment, I think.
(Thank you for sharing your wonderful thoughts and comics, by the way! It's very inspiration and motivational.)
I also love how you can put so much depth, comedy, and explanations in one strip! Amazing! I also especially love the three blind men and the elephant, with their perspectives of how it looked and what it was.
ALL OF THIS! I have friends that I have tried to explain this to and some have even gotten upset with me, as if I was trying to take away their freedom or their personality. We may not have the full picture of what beauty truly is but it certainly has bounds, it has edges, forms, and all great artists wether it's musicians, painters, or poets touch some part of it. That's what makes art resonate, that's what makes it true. To me art is communication, and you can't communicate without a language.
Because if it's not communication isn't it just.. pointless self gratification?
I love this, the part where the three blind men where talking about what they think an elephant is. That's such an accurate analogy. Personally, I believe that beauty is simply everywhere. IT's kind of like how Jack Frost in the Rise of the Guardian is everywhere, but only the ones who believe in him can see him. Beauty is everywhere, but only the ones who can appreciate it will see it.
On an unrelated note, I'd love to get a physical copy of your book, but the shipping cost for the $20 pledge is a bit rough on my piggy bank, so I was wondering if it would cost the same if not more if I bought it after the kick starter project ends?
I guess what I meant to say was that many people will tell you that because we all see things just a bit differently, truth must not exist. But that is not a logical statement when you think about it-- how can you derive a conclusion about truth from a statement about perception? It just doesn't follow through. Does that make sense?
Not bad - very busy, but good busy - it's keeping me occupied ^_^ I've also got lots of different jobs which makes things a lot more interesting... get to do a bit more illustration as well as the usual design work
I watch you for a long time and I want to say ... you tell me always the same story. It is true! In the last ... possible 10 comics you told me very similar things. I don't want to make you angry or sad. I only want to say ... well, that what i said.
I saw a while back that the title of your next comic would be "Hug the Elephant" and I was interested from the get-go to see what topic it may cover. After seeing the end, and reading the strip again, I have to say that the title is most certainly quite appropriate for the topic.
Once again, your comic here is timely for me as a person, since it addresses something I'm working through, personally. It is uncanny - and yet, pleasant.
Right now, I'm working on a writing project. It's a work of fiction, but I have found myself reaching for the dictionary many times to ensure the word I want to use is correct; and more than once I have actually used an encyclopedia to confirm a concept I was using would be appropriate. I do this so that my readers can lean back and enjoy the story if they wish, without worrying about inappropriate use of "artistic license." In other words, I want to follow the rules. In the process, I find myself "hugging the elephant" and learning more overall.
You're right - following a set of rules with art is quite liberating and enjoyable.
Thank you for taking the time to write and draw these essays.
I have always thought that, like may other concepts or feelings, beauty does exist; not in the physical world, though, but in our mind. That's why it's different for everybody.
Beauty could be considered a mental entity that is slightly (or not so slighly!) differently for each person. Because we all are human, very often our concept of beauty may be similar of that of other people, but it doesn't necessarily have to be so.
I think, simply, that artists should focus on what they personally find beautiful Create, imitate, try to reach the kind of beauty that they enjoy, and also look for new kinds of beauty they may have overlooked.
I respect your view on this. Like I said in the comic-- I can't prove beauty is out there, so I really have no foundation to argue one way or the other.
I suppose I prefer the concept that beauty is outside of us because it gives us something to pursue and discover, it gives us something to argue about and debate on and grow towards. It's very motivating! When I think beauty might contain principles and constants, it fills me with a hunger to learn, like a scientist trying to figure out what makes the universe tick. It moves me to action, to pursuit. The scientist searches because he assumes there is something to find.
My struggle is that I feel like our culture is constantly telling me I am not allowed to be a scientist in regard to art. People seem to find the idea of universal beauty distasteful, even wrong. I think this might be because a statement about beauty is a statement about humanity, about the eyes that perceive the beauty, about ourselves. We are very hesitant to say anything definite about ourselves, because we don’t want to be perceived as absolutist or dogmatic. But I think our hearts betray us– universal statements about humanity brings out our passions and hungers and hopes that we are not alone, that we are not so different that we can’t relate to each other.
When you look out in the world it does look pretty dark and unfathomable. There are two ways of interpreting the darkness. Either we can see, but there is darkness in the world, as our culture seems to tell us, or we are blind but live in a world of light. I would rather believe the world is full of light and I am blind, because at least I’d have something to look at if I ever find a cure for my blindness.
I understand your way of thinking Very interesting read, thanks for your explanation! I love talking about this kind of things.
As a person who enjoys 'mindplay', as to speak (concepts, ideas and theorizing about them), I personally think that there actually is no difference between what is 'outside' us and what is 'inside'. Look at it from this point of view: everything we see and feel we actually see and feel in our mind. What is real to us is the impression that things give us, and not the things themselves. We actually can't prove that the world exists outside of us (Descartes talked about this, I think); because, from the day we are born and until we die, we'll only see the world through our own eyes.
So it doesn't really matter if things exist or not, does it?, because to us they do And that's what's really important.
At the same time, our mind is so complex that we don't know almost anything about ourselves, and we keep discovering and developing thoughts, opinions, views, feelings, during all our life; maybe they had been in our mind all along, maybe they appeared later, who knows? But we don't really know ourselves completely, each new situation brings a new side of us and that is what's the most exciting about life. Maybe the only times when we can see a bit more of that 'unconscious' part of ourselves, naked, is when we're dreaming and through art (or creativity, our beauty, however you want to call it).
So I don't think that beauty does 'need' to be an external entity in order to be able to be discovered and defined 'scientifically', as you said Because in fact everything in this world is somehow mental. So I agree with you about the fact that beauty is not so different from other things that we usually consider 'physically real'. By this train of thought, if you consider, for example, a tree to be reachable and definable, why not beauty as well? So I can agree with you, because we're actually talking about more or less the same thing. I just have a tendency to add layers and layers and layers or reasoning... but what you say about 'not being able to prove it, but believing it because I prefer to' is more or less it.
In response to this (what a great sentence!): "Universal statements about humanity brings out our passions and hungers and hopes that we are not alone, that we are not so different that we can’t relate to each other."
I'm currently studying Language and Literature, and there's this concept in Linguistics that we often talk about, which is called Universal Grammar. Each person is different, but, at the same time, we're all human and we share most basic aspects of our being. One of them is our language capability. Thanks to the fact that we all 'think similarly' (as scientists would say, we have more or less the same brain), all languages in the world share a lot of aspects, structures, sounds (Universal Grammar); even if those languages have never been in contact at all.
Isn't that amazing and surprising? Words represent our views on the outside world at the most basic of levels (for example, 'beauty', as we're discussing now), so this means that there are thousands of ways to see the world, because each person speaks a bit differently even inside of the same 'tongue'. At the same time, though, all languages are the same at their deepest level. Doesn't it make you think about art, and the passion for life that you have described, and the mystery and thrill of trying to find out more about ourselves and humanity? I consider this fact to be beautiful.
In a more personal note: in my everyday life, I just know that I have my views on 'beauty' (beauty in nature, in people, in things that I enjoy to do, in art, in life), that are different from those of other people, and I try to find this beauty and touch it and enjoy it and even discuss it. But, apart from cases like right now, I don't really question what it is, exactly; I just know it's there, and it's important to me, it makes the world richer and more enjoyable and it gives me fuel to go on and be curious and learn. The rest doesn't matter to me
It's hard for me to explain this kind of thing in English, I keep repeating the same things and taking too long, but I hope you understand what I mean.
Thanks again for your wonderful and inspiring comics. I wish you happiness and luck!