Monday, March 03, 2008

Negative Space

In art, nothing is, more often than not, the artist's best friend. Many times, when faced with a blank canvas, resisting the urge to fill every inch of it with "something" makes for a better composition. It gives the eye a rest- the visual equivalent of a musical pause- and it makes what IS there all that much more important.

It also makes what is there seem more beautiful- even if it is horifying, even if it is hard to look at, the uncluttered image against it's natural space is a beautiful thing to behold. That's why images of the Passion usually contain so much negative space- in placing such misery against the open sky makes it redefine what Beauty is.

Writers often struggle with the same problem- we fill the air with words like so many buzzing bees, rather than holding out breath and making less become more.

How much of what we write, however, really matters?

In the visual arts, negative space is the tool to expose the viewer to Beauty.

In writing, silence is the tool to expose the reader to Truth.

Maybe we talk to much because Truth isn't as valuable as it should be.

Maybe a lie that sounds juicy and tickles the ears is more fun to tell than the quiet, boring truth.




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