Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Where is the content, Where is the comment?

I recently participated in a group discussion forum with other students in my class where we reviewed the article 'Where is the content? Where is the comment?' from Creative Review by Lawrence Zeegen who is an artist, illustrator and author.

Lawrence Zeegen describes Illustration today as being highly decorative and pretty with no purpose in conveying any message or meaning in other words there's a 'nothingness' about it.  Zeegen said...

''illustration has become entrenched in navel-gazing and self-authorship...obsessed with it's own craft, it has withdrawn from society's big debates to focus on the chit-chat of inner sanctum nothingness.  It's time for the profession to stop pleasing itself and engage with the world outside''

Zeegen made it clear that he very much favoured David Shrigley's work.  David Shrigley who is a illustrator, cartoonist and animator combines his hand rendered type and own unique naive illustrative style to communicate controversial messages and meanings and also to pass comment on our society.  It is obvious that Shrigley's work is about the message and meaning not about the naive style drawings.  Zeegan thinks that Shrigley engages the public and has a meaning as his work is more about the content.

I didn't agree with what Lawrence Zeegan is saying for the following reasons.  Firstly all artwork in any medium has a value as it communicates with people in different ways in the same way as it is interpreted by the viewer.

Secondly all illustrations made for editorials/commissions must have a point as they are made in response to strict briefs and are generally restricted, not risky and led by the Art Director.

Thirdly Illustrators are getting out there and getting their illustrations on a range of products and working in a variety of mediums and having a versatile approach when commission are low, this shows a very driven passion in what they do.

In addition to the above I also feel that as Illustrators we consider the line, shape and texture and integrity of the materials and how we draw objects to ensure that we communicate the relevant message, feel and look of something.  Also Illustration is no longer the sole meaning of communicating with the world, radio, newspaper and Internet are all much used to communicate message and meaning.

I am enjoying the Discussion Forums that we attend on a weekly basis as it's a great opportunity to share ideas and engage with the creative world outside of the studio and become more involved in the ideas and debates that take place currently.

To read the full article on 'Creative Review' click here

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