Sunday, October 31, 2010

Following the Yellow Brick Road

This photo, Wooden Fence in Munchkinland, was taken on my journey through the Land of Oz a year ago.

Adventurers who follow the yellow brick road towards their dreams are seen as bucking the system. Most people who go through the educational system are pretty much asked to set their entire career path "in stone" with their guidance counselor in middle school or junior high. This leads to things like concrete jungles and paving paradise to put up a parking lot. Students are rewarded for pursuing paths that lead to the typically corporate American Dream of climbing the ladder, and looked down on for specializing in things like industrial arts.

Meanwhile, rumors about budget cuts in schools always seem to appear, threatening to axe art classes altogether. As if art should be considered an expendable extra just because it's "fun." True enough, art has a colorful reputation for daring to be different, breaking established rules, and not always being profitable or utilitarian in the same way as cranking out consumer goods in a factory.

As an artist, the dreams that I have cannot remain contained simply in my imagination. There's that human need for self expression and communication along with my best attempts at the creation of beauty.

"Art for art's sake," as they say.

I only came to discover that I'm an artist just when the economy started to tank. But I was meant to be born and live in these times. Which means I'm meant to use my talents to their fullest in these times. Not "someday." Now!

My recommendation to you as an artist is to go out and chase a few rainbows. Follow the yellow brick road. After all, if you're a photographer like me, the trip through Oz should make for some great photo opportunities! :-)