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Sketchbooks of graphic artist desire fine art?

November 19, 2010

Response to a book review of: ‘Sketchbooks, The Hidden Art of Designers, Illustrators and Creatives’.

This article has best intentions. Clearly graphic artists may be influenced by art in its purist sense, while contemporary artist’s (in their purist sense?) may be influenced directly from miscellaneous commercial art. It is interesting that halfway through this article he argues these images are more like “fine art”. Although, maybe in this sense he means skilled art as historically documented, as opposed to the fine art of a young artist in art school studying ‘fine art’ for example. In this sense this would be very far the case, merely because a few of these images are “loose” and has not got a consumer goal clearly defined as graphic art usually does, does not necessarily mean its fine art. Fine art imagery has its own sense of criteria, for example may at times produce what may seem like nonsensical random output proving itself only through a view of its oeuvre or vice versa. Strangely it may be at odds with a singular message, and may not be simply working out the best method to find the image graphically strong, approachable and succinct. Art which is ambiguous or aloof even from its creator, doesn’t cohere with the work of the graphic artist.

It is an interesting point which sometimes crops up in society -from a layman’s point of view- that at times an image which is ‘messy’ is instantly deemed art, and the clean image deemed graphic illustration. This may explain why a large array of the arts have in appearance crossed paths convincingly. An awareness or even intuition into the content and context help to distinguish what is happening (as with any language). This does make the images richer to the intellect, yet muddy an instantaneous reading -unbearable to so many! If this world of art and its distinctions  is so deep and murky who would blame the one who speaks too soon? Maybe just ask them to look again, more closely, for longer, without instantly opening their mouth.

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