The Madness of Art

Can’t you see the beauty in it.
Blank in its formless shape a potter begins to mold her creation.
Whisking paint across an already smudged canvas he screams…
Can’t you see the beauty in it!
How can you not. My god!
Pounding, Slamming, Crying out for understanding.
What do you want of me says the singer?
Forcing the melody to a page of lines from the clouded head of creativity.
A hum too faint to be audible becomes a chorus of the first line.
Meanwhile out back in the garage the high pitched whistle of white hot light whispers.
Forged from rusted steel, iron and sweat.
Can you see the beauty now?
Maybe you if you stand back…over there…
How about now?
I understand this madness all too well.
Words coming so fast I can’t think.
The artist knows of this madness.
A madness that can’t be squelched.
Like water from a fire hose it comes through them.
There is no relief from this stream of the unconscious pursuit of the perfect.
For there is beauty in the ordinary that makes things extraordinary.
It comes and it comes and it won’t stop.
No amount of sleep, drugs or therapy will make it end.
It only dulls the din of wanting out of his head.
A self expression so pure only the artist knows the madness of art.
Can you see it now she cry’s.
Backed into a corner slumped down, brush in hand… it is done she smiles.
The torch of molten creativity has faded like a boiling tea pot removed from the flame.
The madness of art stops…only to be torn down and begun again.
Can’t you see the beauty in it!?

 Spoken Words by Gerald Grinter

Are Orange Polka Dot Giraffes Magical? – Confessions of an Artist

It was 4th grade art class, the assignment to create an animal out of paper mache. I thought it would be a fun assignment. When the teacher came to my station shesaid “What is that supposed to be?” “Why it is a Orange Polka Dot Giraffes” I said with pride. “Well, giraffes aren’t orange and they don’t have polka dots.” The class laughed.

Who told you growing up you couldn’t _________

We all have that moment in time when we were told , you can’t write, you can’t draw, you can’t sing or you can’t______. We play this over in our heads. When we get older we believe that person. They said it, they must be right and it  has become part of our inner dialog.

It somehow morphs into that little voice in our heads, and we believe it. Why? What if we stopped believing in that voice? Would you try that very thing and maybe become really good at it? Well that is exactly what I did.

Moving to a place of creativity

I took my Orange Polka Dot Giraffes home. He sat in my room and he went well. My room had giant yellow and orange daisies on one wall and yellow and orange paint on the other walls.  The giraffe became a fixture. He guarded over my drawings and he stood as a reminder to keep doing what I loved, Art!

I kept drawing and I started selling some of my art work and in high school I was a featured artist in the art gallery in our office.  I started creating custom cards and I still draw today. I create children’s books and toys when I am not busy being a graphic designer.

Defeat or magic

It is up to you. Do you want to take what someone said all those many years ago and throw your hands up in defeat or do you want to make magic? I know that Orange Polka Dot Giraffes are not magical, in real life there is no such thing, but mine was.

With parents who encouraged self expression, with love in my heart and a passion for what I love, that Orange Polka Dot Giraffe was truly magical. We are not great at everything we do. We all have talents. It is this artists belief that a little talent, mixed with love and passion she can grow to be anything she sets her mind on being.

Your magic giraffe

Find that moment when you were told you couldn’t do_______. Go out and prove that teacher, parent, or school chum wrong. Find your magic giraffe and see what journey he or she will take you on.

The first step on the journey is to tell someone, anyone what defeated you, so if you found this at all useful, share your story here. I for one would like to know how many magic giraffes are out there running around.

Thanks for letting me share.



A Letter to My 5 Year Old Me.

Dear 5-year-old me:

If you have come to play and make merry, I accept you with open arms. I love the crazy, fun, side of  you that reminds me not to be so seri­ous all of the time. I love when we play with our toys, think of new fun sto­ries and go on adven­tures.
If, how­ever you are here; with your neg­a­tive, mean, and ugly com­ments, you can just take a time out! I do not appre­ci­ate those aspects of your per­son­al­ity. Those things you say about not being good enough, ask­ing who do I think I am to try and be suc­cess­ful? These things are mean and hurtful.

Look around us, mean 5-year-old me. Look what I have done so far. I have built a won­der­ful team of friends to help me be wildly suc­cess­ful; I have cre­ated toys with hugs in their hearts and enough love to share. I have cre­ated adven­tur­ous sto­ries, with a lov­ing com­mu­nity. I have cre­ated magic. I am already a suc­cess for step­ping out­side our com­fort zone and try­ing some­thing, try­ing any­thing. I could have lis­tened to that mean part of you, I could have given up a long time ago, but I didn’t and I don’t plan too.

So you can just go to your cor­ner, sit down and shut up! If you can’t play nice and have fun than you need a time out — A very long time out! Don’t come back to play until you have a bet­ter atti­tude. Don’t come back until you want to have fun. Don’t come back until you can add some­thing pos­i­tive to our greater good.


5o-year-old me