I started my professional journey when I was in high school, experimenting with songwriting, graphic design, and poetry for leisure and small commission projects. My affinity grew through my opportunities at university, and my personal interests are a way of thinking about art. While my creative process is not inherently unique, my lack of formal training allows me to experience each work as window into the development of each art form. I try to leave behind a trail of process work-to-work, for I believe each creative expression gives meaning to the overall process of art beyond its plain value.
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You came to learn about me, I suppose...
And this is the best way I can introduce myself! These are my thoughts on art. However, you are welcome to skip this thesis and navigate directly to my general biography and CV by using the respective button above.
Three Forms: aural • literary • visual
In my learning, I've identified three art forms of particular categorical interest: aural art, literary art, and visual art. Each of these areas use unique perceptual cues to affect their observers (to listen, to read, to see). Unlike the popularized categorization model for art which relies on method, media, or genre and is therefore built on exclusivity (pop versus country, painting versus sculpting, poetry versus prose, etc.), a more generalized mode of thought encourages inclusivity and combination between many forms of art.
I have found for myself a freedom in this way of thinking. The categories of art are no longer limited by their media or genre (which perpetuates in-group/out-group mentality and prestige associations), but rather art can now capitalize on its intended purposes, or compositional gestures.
My model may offer a way to synthesize the creative world, derestricting the individual while maintaining the well-developed structure and current spheres of influence and interest. By doing so, we can unlock the next generation of art to be experienced by all participants: to interact.
The Roles: artist • observer
There seem to be two prominent roles in every form of art. The Artist is the organizer and creator of an artistic experience, whereas The Observer is the appreciator or witness of the artistic experience. This separation is helpful, for it allows us to consider the different perspectives and experiences built into each art.
Consider how the artist sculpting from a stone experiences their work so differently than their assistant, or their audience. Or the poet's than their reader's? The Artist experiences the act of creation, while the The Observer experiences the result of labor. While The Artist may know the intentions behind each decision, The Observer must find such things through the artwork. The value appeal of art is made so high by this dichotomy. This is one of the reasons, I feel, that role reversal can be so powerful in the hands of a skilled artist.
the HEARD form
My first experience as an artist was in the aural form. I did not have a talent for using my hands or mind creatively, but sound came easily to me. I found comfort in repetitive keyboard microforms and finding patterns in the sounds around me from chirping birds to rustling leaves, and the hum of the furnace at home to the methodical clicking of a seatbelt when my family got into the car.
To me, aural art envelops all things heard. A folksong can be aural art, but so too can the creaking of stair-steps! Aural art is simply an intentional experience of sound. You can create aural art such as by writing a concerto or amplifying the hit of a stone against metal. You can also simply experience it by choosing to focus on a sound such as the wildlife around you, or the machinery in your life. I have found that the most lasting of my memories from youth have been those connected to sound (the Christmas music blaring overtop a whirring hand-mixer in the kitchen, for example...sugar cookies anyone?)
From late elementary through early high school, (much to the playful chagrin of my father) I almost always had a book with me. Reading was somewhat of an escape for me, but it was also a delight! My creativity ran wild in these imaginative worlds, and I found refuge in each story. But I did not just read books and poetry, although those were my passions. I am not sure how old I was when I began, but I also loved to read people. Body language and social traditions piqued my interest, and though I was never a master in their analysis, the patterns I found helped me comprehend the social rulebook around me.
the READ form
I view all things readable to be the literary form. Yes, prose and poetry and theatre are included, but so too are the languages of body, personal decision, finance, relationships, and many other interactions. I find it useful to regard personal experiences as examples, for we tend to read our previous actions as a story leading us to our current existence. If we intentionally read our decisions and actions, do we not become more aware of ourselves in the process?
I have to admit, I think I always perceived the world through visual form. I still recall the wonder I had by staring at the layered and detailed bark of the trees as I played outside when I was younger. What fascination! Although I never drew or painted or sculpted anything of note in my younger years (unless you count stick-figures and scribbled lines in the margins of my homework...), I did quite appreciate the art form of seeing! Nothing was free from my gaze: patterns in the sky, the creases between the hair on my skin, on the floors and walls enraptured me, as did the movies, dramas, and video games I experienced.
Visual art is all things seen. When you intentionally experience what you see, you find story of its creation, be it a beautiful setting sun or a dilapidated plywood-windowed apartment. Paintings and sculpture are joined by marketing design and the very trees growing outside your window. Memories are pictures burned into our minds, fashion and finish is seen and judged then often forgotten. Yet we continue to value a car or a blouse by their lack of visual story (a scratch or tear could represent a memory, though we feel it is an err must be fixed.) Why? In my opinion: because we are creatures of visual art.
the SEEN form
Problems with this model
There are some severe shortcomings of this model. You may be thinking to yourself...
Don't these categories overlap?
These categories are incomplete and do not include all art.
Categorizing art detracts from the experience of art.
The model seems inconsistent.
This model is still in its developmental stages, and there are many things left to be solved. By introducing this mode of thought, I do not mean to suggest it is the shiny new future of the art world! As largely a leisure participant, I simply do not have the experience needed to test this model against a wide variety in a short period of time. However, in my somewhat limited experience, I found that art was reaching a creative upper limit through which we must break. This model serves as a framework which can be used to accomplish that goal. Please click the tabs above to read my response to each of the fundamental shortcomings before I conclude this thesis.
the NEW form
As a conclusion to my thesis on art forms, I would like to propose a new form of art. Unlike the previous forms, it is built by combining many other art forms into a single experience. Recall my view that the value in these forms is in the intentional awareness of their existence (think: the birds chirping, the bark of the tree, the human body language). Now imagine an artistic experience wherein these forms are intentionally synthesized to create an overall experience that is simultaneously aural, visual, and literary.
At every moment, The Observer can use their points of interest (perhaps they like dance) to better understand and experience a form which otherwise would be inaccessible for them (perhaps they don't easily relate to paintings or music). The art would showcase a combination of forms in relationship with one another, and the experience overall would be multi-dimensional. The Observer becomes just as much of an artist as each independent contributor to the event.
How am I choosing to implement this model and new form into my life?
I keep a daily journal of personal experiences, and I intentionally focus on small and large sensations and perceptions.
Bachelors of Music Education