So we have talked in the past about the whole visual art thing I have been working on for a bit now (imagine it has been close to a year now). During all that time I have tested out some different apps and removed some then added some back and then I did something I never would have thought I would do, I took the whole thing back to analog. It’s true, I have actually done some painting with real paints, like where I can get my hands dirty and such.
It’s a bit crazy, I know. But at the same time it is all part of the learning experience.
So just recently I added a couple apps back to the ipad because I wanted to see the experience with them again now that I have been doing all of this for a little while. I ended up painting the same picture in those apps that I have painted in the main app I use (procreate) and also physically.
And of course, I have uploaded the pictures here so we can all ooohhhh and aaahhh and generally go all fancy cause I am such the artiste (sarcasm… it happens). But if you haven’t learned any thing about me by now, it will come as a surprise that the reason I am sharing these here right now isn’t because I am trying to show off.
Actually, I am using them as an excuse so I can delve into something else entirely. Welcome to the bait and switch.
Sure, I could have opened with Banned Book Week. But then we wouldn’t have had the enjoyable interlude, we wouldn’t have had pretty pictures, I wouldn’t have been able to humble brag, I mean seriously, we would have had anarchy. You don’t want anarchy do you? Cause that’s how you get it.
OK, back on point. So yeah, it is Banned Book Week, and I know I am talking about it here when it is almost over. I can’t help that, sometimes I actually stick to the posting schedule. I also suppose you wonder how I am going to link the first portion of this into something about banning books and censorship.
This is where I step out on the thin part of the limb and bring in a strange and scary point. All four of those paintings were of the same exact flowers. You can’t really tell because they don’t really look too much alike, not in the final pieces. The colors are different and the backgrounds are different. The shapes have been readjusted due to the colors and how they interact. And now I am stretching the point a bit far.
So we come back with a story. If I hadn’t mentioned it, I have been working in the library for a little bit now (total change of pace for work. I actually have time to hang out and drink coffee and get paid for it). And a couple of us were thinking of doing some stuff for a display for the week. Nothing really huge but enough to call attention and show that we are thinking of such things.
Well, one of my coworkers is cleaning up old files right now and in a folder she ran across a couple really interesting things. The first was a challenged book form. Yes, libraries do have such things, they are still part of the community they are in and it is good to work with the community to have or not have some things on the shelves. And the other was an article from the early 80s (the form was from the 70s).
Now the article was an interesting one in and of itself. It was a challenge that a preacher had about a couple books. This preacher also happened to be part of the KKK. And I can already hear you starting to preach about the horrors of their evil ways and all that. (I agree, but wait, there’s more)
I want you to think about the flowers at the beginning of this article for a moment. Their outward appearances were all entirely different. But inside, the base that these flowers were built on were exactly the same.
And so we come to the next thought of the day. You might still hear a bit about people like in the article I just mentioned. But if you look around and keep your eyes open, you will see something more. There are people that have an outward appearance that is completely different than the KKK preacher. But deep down they are doing the same exact thing.
What I mean is censorship. It’s a blade that cuts both ways. The moment we decide to cut out thoughts that we don’t like and don’t agree with, we become just as ugly as those we disagree with.
This is why banned book week is still relevant. This is why it is so important. We are people and we will always try to get away from the things that make us uncomfortable. We will always try to cut those things from our lives.
But when we do that, when we let these baser instincts win over the importance of our freedoms, that is the day that tyranny has won. It doesn’t matter what the good cause is for the action. Everyone who has ever fought to limit another’s freedoms has thought they were doing the right thing. When we silence the voices we don’t agree with, what will we do when someone doesn’t agree with our message, our voice.
One of the best things you can do, is to take a turn to read a book you are sure you won’t agree with. Don’t do it all the time, more like maybe 1 in 10 or so. But it is important to challenge yourself and your beliefs every now and then.
It’s always good to remember that no one has had the experiences you have had. No one else has seen life the way you do. You can learn something new from the places you never thought of. Seek to learn and understand the world that others see. It will open your eyes to so much more. And don’t let other people make your book choices for you.
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