All American Art Forms Are Suffering

Fantasy is escapist, and that is its glory. If a soldier is imprisoned by the enemy, don’t we consider it his duty to escape?. . . If we value the freedom of mind and soul, if we’re partisans of liberty, then it’s our plain duty to escape, and to take as many people with us as we can!
J.R.R. Tolkien

All American art forms are suffering.

Storytelling is being cut off at the knees by exorbitant writing programs and overly critical analysis of work. If it does not appeal to a massive audience then it’s not worth the time. No wonder self publishing has exploded. However, there are many sharks circling in those waters as well. Few things have escaped the influence of the Young Adult market. Fantasy writing is watered down by writers not looking hard enough and deep enough for the twist in their stories. What is left for adults to enjoy? How many women are reading YA? TONS. Something is being lost. Sex, violence and epic tales of struggle and romance maybe?

There is tremendous writing going on in graphic novels here but from what I see, comic book art and hand drawn illustration is being watered down by computer art, and dying out just like the film industry, the publishing industry and the music industry in America.  Lack of substance and promoting only the next big thing are eating away at these industries.

As for Art, it’s no longer a general option in most schools and we still look down on comics even as a few older titles make HUGE money.  It’s ridiculous!

We made cartoons in America and a handful of dudes monopolized it right out of existence. Chief among them was Disney. Now they have murdered their own 2D animation. It’s gone as of last month. No more feature length movies drawn by hand. But they bought “Spirited Away”. I hope they didn’t buy all of Studio Ghibli. If you have not seen “Spirited Away” or “Howl’s Moving Castle, find them soon. Both are hand drawn and beautiful. There is an audience and money for every single type of animation and manga comic in Japan, plus a world wide audience that is still growing. America has one working, full feature big budget studio for animation, PIXAR, that now belongs to Disney.

My newest favorite piece of storytelling, animation and craft goes to Ireland for “The Secret of Kells.” I’ve watched it dozens of times and I’m spellbound by both the story and the art.

We are losing new visionaries in writing, and 2D illustration. Skill in all of these will diminish and those forms will be watered down or go the same way America lost jazz and animation.

We must support each other with our money and time. I buy art from other artists and books from other writers. We should encourage each other’s projects. If we all do that, we as a nation can save the diversity and craft of our creative spirit .

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