“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
– William Arthur Ward
I have been drawing as far back as I can remember. My mom used to tell me that I could draw before I could talk. I’ve spoken on previous Iterations about my childhood love of art supply stores, which is still kind of true. All I ever wanted to be as a kid was an animator at Disney and I drew constantly. That changed a bit in high school when I was introduced to photography, but I didn’t stop drawing. In fact, I wanted to go to Art Center College of Design in Pasadena to study photography and illustration. As it happened — and this must have been my sophomore or junior year — Art Center was awarding scholarships for weekend classes, and one of them was being taught by a real Disney animator. All you had to do to be considered was submit a portfolio of your work. I told myself that I didn’t have a shot, and even if I did, there was no way we could afford the $40,000 a year that it cost to go there. On top of that, there was my dad and his repeated “artists are a dime a dozen” speeches echoing in my head. So I didn’t even try. In fact, I went the other way and started making up excuses for why I no longer even wanted to go to Art Center. To borrow from The Book of Pressfield, it was Resistance plain and simple. But my high school art teacher, Mr. Andrew, didn’t agree.
The new issue of Time magazine which is called The Art of Optimism – 34 people changing how we see our world. The editorial that begins the issue is called “Why art is the antidote for our times” by Director Ava DuVernay and the issue includes articles by Laverne Cox, Bill Gates, and Guillermo del Toro. There’s also a terrific article called “12 Leaders Who Are Shaping the Next Generation of Artists” which features interviews and commentary on where art is at and where it’s going.
Flashbak posted a really great series of photographs of New York taken by Too Papageorge in 1966-67. One of the things that makes them so special — other than capturing New York in a way that many of us have never seen it — is that the photos were all taken on Kodachrome and they just show what an amazing film Kodachrome was – the colors, the shadows – and for many photographers that film stock was what defined their style.
In honor of Black History month, the New York TImes has launched a terrific new project called Overlooked, which begins “Since 1851, The New York Times has published thousands of obituaries: of heads of state, opera singers, the inventor of Stove Top stuffing and of the Slinky. The vast majority chronicled the lives of men, mostly white ones. Now, we’re adding the stories of other remarkable people.” The site is really well done and new obituaries will be added weekly. There’s also a form to allow users to nominate candidates for future entries.