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PATH

57K, digital painting of a dream, 1989/10/12, by Chris Wayan.


My life-drawing teacher said "Go home and draw a spiritual experience with several figures." So I painted a path with pyramids and a friendly sphinx and sexy meditators holding roses. Since my computer only had 16 colors, I made them loud.

That night, I dreamed I walked that path, but two sharp-toothed animals appeared, tumbling and chasing each other across the path. They said "little animals playing are the real spiritual path."

So I put them in before I printed the picture for my class.

I showed a two-foot printout to my class--the first digital painting I ever showed in public.

And here's what my classmates and even my teacher said: "That's not a picture! You didn't draw it. A machine drew it. Computers are soulless! Computers are taking over!" They couldn't SEE my painting, let alone critique it--blinded by fear. In the heart of Silicon Valley!

Art and tech had divorced again. (True, they remarried a few years later.)

On a path lined with meditating women holding roses, two playful little black animals tumble.
I couldn't find many other little animals who wanted to play, but I kept computer-painting alone. If you're reading this in a village somewhere, be aware: cities are no magic answer. John Lennon was right:
"The world is just a little town
Everybody tryin' to put us down
Isolation."

Though I soon moved to San Francisco and found SOME cities keep their promises. Then, anyway. Now money is pricing out artists fast here. Prosperity's good for business but bad for stillness--and silliness, and laziness, and happiness, and creativemess, and lochness.

Watch out. You may be next.

MORAL:

Be agile, little animals. And find someone to play with.

Spiritual message? That IS spiritual! What do you want, extra fries?



LISTS AND LINKS: shamanic dreams - animal people - sphinxes - play - life-paths - meditation - individualism and conformity - school dreams - artists and the arts - pure digital art - sexy dream provoked by Path: Otters Don't Fake - a Loch Ness dream - a Lennon dream, though since it's written entirely in puns, who can read it?

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