Post by Steve Perry Post by Larry Deack
Right on, Larry. Finish an original painting, play a piece of guitar music
that is your own interpretation, write a novel, stageplay, screen play, or
short story that is totally your own--and you'll see that NO amount of
money can give you that natural high, a high that is so enduring that it
will be extant somewhere in time and space for others, if you allow, to
enjoy even after you've long passed to the ages.
Well, having managed all those experiences, I can say that, from where
I sit, the sense of accomplishment that comes from *doing* the work is
augmented considerably when somebody then pays you money on top of it
to put the work out where the public can access it.
And that when the work sells, a larger audience doesn't feel any worse
than a smaller one.
My understanding of art, especially these forms, is that such are kinds
of communication -- there is something you wish others to see or hear,
and that which the act of creation is in itself satifsying, it's only
half the equation. A singer can be satisfied by listening to his own
song, a writer can limit himself to a journal, but those experiences
are not as rich as sharing your creation with the society in which you
I don't know any writers who do it for the ages. Most of them write
because they want to tell stories, and the best ones do it for, among
other things, money ...
They're two different kinds of highs. Everybody needs some kind of money:
we have no choice, if only to meet the basic needs of everyday living.
There is nothing wrong with making money so long as the method of making it
is both legal and honorable. I have never turned down money, although there
have been times when I did not ask for or receive money when I might have
The other high, the "artsy/fartsy" kind, is different. I've sold paintings
that took me months to design, execute, and finish, yet I've given other
paintings away free of charge. For example, some of the paintings I've
given away as gifts were, in my opinion, worth far more money (on the
market) than some I've sold. In either case, the actual high comes in the
person of creating the original painting--regardless of whatever eventually
becomes of the piece once it's finished.
I may not appear to be much of a writer in my posts because I usually write
quickly and informally in this group. But one of my written works is in
libraries all over this country and, indeed, the world. I never received a
penny for that book, although many have read and referenced my work in
professional writings of their own.
In an entirely different genre of writing, I'm working on a stageplay right
now. When finished, this piece I will market for its message, but if I can
sell it for money, I will. One thing is for certain, however: when I finish
this piece--money or no--it will in its person long outlast me as it has, in
its historical context, long preceded me.
I agree with you that "sharing" is a wonderful thing. Art is for sharing,
although not all agree upon the definition of art. Whatever the mechanism
is, if a feeling of enjoyment is garnered from reading, looking,
listening--using out sensory perceptions and our mental facilities--then the
shared artistic experience is complete.
As for the "ages", I do believe that if anything of a human nature can
survive over time, it is art. When and if mankind goes the way of the
dinosaurs, human art will remain and speak of what once was.