AMA INTERVIEW

Delany AMA Interview

Dec 6-8 2017

Do you get negative feedback for your work sometime?

How do you deal with it?

I want to take this opportunity to plug  Marshall Rosenberg.  Here is a LINK to his videos on YouTube. His POV has changed my life and I am just one of many in that regard.

He inspires me to "Natural Giving" and was the impetus behind The Rabbit Ears I put on. When I put on what Marshall calls "a revolutionary technology" I don't hear criticism or negative feedback. I only hear that the person in front of me is in some kind of pain. At that time the best option I have, Marshall says, is to show empathy and discover in the other the "Unmet Need."   He calls this negative language "Jackel speech, a tragic, suicidal, expression of an unmet need.."  Jackel thinking and speech are, "I'm right, You're wrong", and "I'm a winner, You're a loser." He proposes we learn a new language, which he calls "Giraffe." He has taught this language to individuals and warring tribes to effectively mediate their differences. For me, it is truly the language or peace & Love. Try it.

What were the most exciting and interesting experiences you had with creating your project

 

The most exciting and interesting for me was the moment when every 1st time Kickstarter has to make a video. I wanted it to be "good."  I have friends I could ask to help who have equipment and experience. I could write a script and practice it. I could be very creative and professional if I wanted to go that way. Hell, I'm a partner ina video production company DavidAndDavidVideo.com!  But I didn't want that because it would just be a lot of ego and work that was not going to serve the cause. I decided to give everybody a break including myself and serve the cause by going the other direction and allowing myself to be goofy, which is authentic, playful, which is fun and still, deliver the message clearly to the audience as humorously as possible. Humor is magic. It can turn a foe into a friend. It can save your life. It can make for a "good" video that lacks every technical advantage. 

I imagined people seeing the first frame of a guy with rabbit ears on and saying to themselves, "What is this?" They can assume from the frame that they will not be crushed or swooned with propaganda. They have been given the option of being playful and imperfect too, which is a relief for people. Especially people who are being asked to be good and contribute to projects. That was my thinking. I didn't know if it would "work" for the cause but I knew it would work for me and that was enough to go ahead. Also, it meant I would be DONE quickly and could move on to...this for example. Here is the link again to the birth of The Rabbit. Long may he propagandize for a positive social change!

What do you prefer: black and white images or color?

Let me give you an example: In the previous question from Kathryn I ended the reply with an image of a pair of purple wings I own because it added to the story I was telling. I had to choose This BW image

This medium color image washed muted

or this full color, enhanced image

Each gives more or less emotional impact on the story. To me, the B&W image would be nostalgic. My feeling is that B&W conveys that what you are looking at is GONE and this is the memory of it. That's why I like B&W movies from the 50's I don't need to see anything more than the B&W to go back in time. Back in time could be an hour ago..and in photography it kind of is.

Ahhh but COLOR!! Color is all emotion and LIFE NOW. When a film goes from B&W to Color is it like you feel reborn. awakened...maybe that's why I went with the color image in the story I wrote for Kathryn. The wings are still hanging on the wall. I can take them down and go flying around, so to speak, anytime NOW. So the B&W versus Color decision is really a question of "How do I feel about this subject" It that an answer to your question? Thanks for asking. It is an important subject for an artist.

If you could go back in time what would you advise your younger self?

I would not advise him. He would not take advise. He only wanted his version of reality confirmed. That is easy no matter the illusion at hand. Just look around. He was going to go his way regardless of what others advised. Sound familiar? Instead, I would listen to him. Then let him know that I could tell his future and ask if he wanted to hear? He would say 'yes!' I would tell him the good news. "One day", I would say,"you will be grateful for all that you have and all that you are instead of being deeply insecure about all that you lack and all you are not." He wouldn't understand but he would be glad to hear that there was a happy ending. He was certainly aware that things were none too good in the present, but not so bad either. I would continue talking as he smiled about this, " That day will come after you have suffered a great deal for a long time and proclaimed to yourself 'I wish I was dead.' "But it will be another lie." I would tell him, "And you will live on, but not as before. Your days of skipping over the ocean like a stone will be over when the stone rests on the bottom of the sea." He will not be smiling now and will ask. 'What do I DO to fix it! "Nothing, I tell him, GRACE will intervene and you will begin to float up. When you reach the surface you will wake up and breathe in the realization that you have been walking into walls. Covered in your own blood and breathing again you will say to yourself 'Well if walking forward is into the wall I had best learn to walk backward.' Then I say, " With only your heart and your faith, absent even the illusion of control you will begin to walk backward. Your pronoun will be "We" your mantra will be "Community" Your song will be improvised, and you will walk, then you will fly." He will judge me a colorful and amiable fellow and then he will continue doing just as he had done before I appeared. One day with his purple wings hanging in the kitchen a woman named Kathryn will ask him, "If you could go back in time what would you advise your younger self?" He will smile at the perfect, blessed amazing way that life unfolds its mystery. After he had written what you just read. DD

What kinds of art do you like besides drawing?

Hi Jordon, Thanks,  I am really a big fan and practitioner of improvisation in all its forms for reasons I wrote about earlier here:  

For me being an artist is unraveling all the critical thinking that has shaped me. I could say distorted me too. In the process of "playing" at Art, I get to go to the tight places in the ball of twine that is my life up till now and make some room, loosen it up a bit and so become lighter, ready to take on the next knot. I call this artistic practice or play with a purpose but I must not be attached to a result. That would not be effective in loosening anything or bringing candor to my existence. There is no end to this play and in a sense no purpose in that the fact of the matter that we all avoid is that we are all perfectly imperfect and everything we do and have done is just part of the universe to which we intimately belong. 

But what else am I to do? What else is there to do? I don't miss my childhood I visit it daily. 

 

Are you using Illustrator in your work? Where can I find useful information about this program?

 

Thanks for the question Christopher, I don't use Illustrator. But you are welcome to use whatever you like and donate the results to ColorAndDraw.org for use in this project. The useful info you may require is the next question's reply.

This platform has put rocket fuel in my social entrepreneur's tank. I want to thank all of the participants and the organizers of this site, Jesa and Titiana, again. I want to be part of this site being available in Spanish

What is your dream? Have you already done anything to make it a reality?

Thank you for participating in this Allison. Here is what I just wrote about my dream for ColorAndDraw.org We have built a website, networked on a dozen platforms including this one and are now launching the "Color Me" Campaign for participants, so this vision of global, creative, unity through color and line can become a reality for millions of people.

Frankly, Allison, we need you and 150 like you to step up and participate for this to have a chance at happening.  There is NO FEE & NO PAYMENT, We ask everyone to give from the heart and I take great joy in living an example of that approach. Here is what we are doing. Join us!

The vision of the "ColorAndDraw" campaign is for a global, digital, creative collaboration between people all over the world, from an artist in London to a fieldhand in Bangladesh. It has a home at ColorAndDraw.org.

The ColorAndDraw vision is for online collaboration between people anywhere in the world thru a smartphone, tablet etc. The whole thing is digital and handled through the website. Some people submit B&W drawings for others to color. Others download and color them, then return the results to ColorAndDraw.org.

The heart of this project is the human story between these two disparate people on opposite sides of the planet coming together thru color and line.  

If that story develops it may well be worthy of attention including gallery showings and art books. If that happens any profits will be used to maintain and grow the organization. 

We will iron out the exact structure in time but first, we need 150 to get started. We need to make all the necessary "mistakes" and learn how this is supposed to happen. When we have a core group of collaborators signed on. I estimate we need 150 people to get started,  We will have a chance of realizing this dream.

So I now encourage you and everyone else to contact me directly david@daviddelany.org or thru the website. This can be done anonymously if that is necessary but we do require some information about the collaborators' experience before, during and after the collaboration. Don't NOT do it. Thank-you DD

Are there any exhibitions of digital paintings?

 

Thanks, Sameera, Not yet, First we have to get 150 people to participate and chronicle the collaborations that ensue.  Only then will we be in possession of a treasure trove of human stories about people who have found some intrinsic reward in their collaboration.  Then we will be charged to show and tell that story in galleries and publications. Contact me and offer to collaborate, to participate in donating drawings or the willingness to color someones else's drawing. That is where we are now: ) david@daviddelany.com

Why did you pick kickstarter over other similar platforms?

Honestly, I was unaware that there are other platforms. I am not an experienced fellow in the ways of platforms that cater to creatives projects. What other platforms are you familiar with? What has been your experience? 

The pictures on your Facebook page look a little tricky. Does your app have any age limits?

Hi Elena, Kids from 1 to 192 are all welcome. Tell me what you mean by "tricky"? We are developing the ColorAndDraw.org site where participants will be able to download drawings to color or upload drawing for others to color. On my Facebook site, you find only my drawings and only some of those. Tell me what you are looking for? Do you have drawings whose likeness you are willing to donate to the site? or are you interested in finding drawings less"tricky" than mine to color? Your answers will be very helpful for us as we go forward with developing ColorAndDraw.org 

We need people just like you to participate and aim to make that as convenient and rewarding as possible. Y.T. DD

What project are you currently working on? What was your most successful project?

These are incredibly good questions for me because they are making me write about the connection between my childhood and my current projects. There is a very important connection as I just unraveled to MAKTER.CA  It is present in my desire, passion, need to belong to this LIFE, it's places and people. So I am building the idea of Global Creative Collaboration with this Kickstarter campaign and our website ColorAndDraw.org 

Then there is my interest in everything improvisational, acting, drawing, dancing,

and singing. Which brings me to the project that is calling for me over my shoulder as I type. It is meant to illustrate the story of CircleSing.orgs beginnings in San Francisco in the late 80's. Circle Sing is an improvisational singing community here in Oakland CA.  Bobby McFerrin is credited with starting it. A long list of fine people is responsible for growing and maintaining it. It is LIFE enhancing, community building and strengthening in all the best ways. I love it so much I partnered with a video production friend of mine to form DavidandDavidVideo.com. Our first, pro bono client is Circle Sing and our project is to promote the Dec 30th "Sing For Your Life" 12-hour marathon, annual impro-singing celebration at 1st Congregational Church 2501 Harrison Oakland CA.

The story I am to illustrate happened in 1987 or so at the first, then a 24-hour SFYL event with Bobby at Grace Cathedral. During the last 5 minutes, the 1000+ singers were holding one note, when a child seated on her dad's shoulders, raised her arms. When she dropped them everybody stopped singing, everybody together like one person. The girl is shocked that she has done this and quickly raises her arms again! Everybody returns to the note. David Worm, who has sung all his life and much of it with Bobby McFerrin tells the story in our video. He says it was there and then that he learned to appreciate the power of Circle Singing. And it is now his spirituality. I get it.

This ties into what I was saying to MAKTER.CA about the play with a purpose that is art. In this case, the purpose is to address the need to belong to a community and to voice one's soul, if I may use that word. One's innermost, outermost, reality. 

MAKTER.CADo you have a particular moment in your childhood or later that has influenced your work and style?

DAVID DELANY Many moments from childhood, maybe all of them, have influenced me. That is the seminal time for a human being before we learn to think critically. We learn to walk by falling down, repeatedly. That experience alone could be a lifetimes work. For me being an artist is unraveling all the critical thinking that has shaped me. I could say distorted me too. In the process of "playing" at Art, I get to go to the tight places in the ball of twine that is my life up till now and make some room, loosen it up a bit and so become lighter, ready to take on the next knot. I call this artistic practice or play with a purpose but not I must not be attached to a result. That would not be effective in loosening anything or bringing candor to my existence. There is no end to this play and in a sense no purpose in that the fact of the matter that we all avoid is that we are all perfectly imperfect and everything we do and has done is just part of the universe to which we intimately belong. But what else am I to do? What else is there to do? I don't miss my childhood I visit it daily. 

 

 DAVID DELANY I can work fast. In 2 hours I draw an average of 15 sketches, usually more. It all depends on how inspired I am. I try to pace myself and take care of myself. The "flow" can be incredible or just nonexistent. One has to take it all in stride and remain confident without getting a big head about "your" skill. I consider myself grateful to tap into a higher power. But I also practice every day.

 

The vision of the campaign is global, digital, creative collaboration and can be found on ColorAndDraw.org. That vision is for online collaboration between people anywhere in the world thru a smartphone, tablet etc. The whole thing is digital and handled through the website. Some people submit B&W drawings to be colored others download and color them, then return the results to ColorAndDraw.org.

The human story between two disparate people on opposite sides of the planet coming together thru color and line is the heart of this project.  If that story develops it may well be worthy of attention including gallery showings and art books, but first things first, we need 150 to get started. We need to make all the necessary "mistakes" and learn how this is supposed to happen. 

We will iron out the exact structure in time if we have a core group of collaborators sign on. I estimate we need 150 people to get started. So I now encourage you and everyone else to contact me directly david@daviddelany.org or thru the website. This can be done anonymously if that is necessary but we do require some information about the collaborators' experience before, during and after the collaboration. Thank-you DD

 

TATIANA BONNEAU Did you study anything art related? Do you think it is essential for an artist to have a degree in art?

DAVID DELANY  Good question, In my humble opinion it is only necessary to do it, therein lies the study. Museums, travel, life is the real teacher filtered through YOU, that is your art. That said, Art education may be a valuable step for a person. It has the potential of giving someone time and space and a tribe of like-minded &  experienced people to commune with.  It could also kill a persons curiosity and confidence with a top-down authority structure.  It really just is up to the individual to decide if this is a help or a hindrance. Get used to making that decision. You will be making it every day and you are the only one that can make it. Take your time. Take your fortune.

 

RON2K17  Is it expensive to be an artist? What is the average cost of producing one painting, not counting the time?

 

DAVID DELANY  Hi Heenal,  Yes,  I have it right here to share with you.

The story is this. I was in my first drawing class. "Advanced Portraiture" I don't know why I started with the advanced class, maybe the scheduling, it certainly was NOT because I was advanced. In fact, I had NO IDEA how to draw a figure. NONE. So I made something up. The muscles are red orbs. The joints are white crosses and that is about as far as I got. This is in pastel. Turns out the fact that it was delicate is what preserved it. Funny that. I put it in a sleeve under a hardcover and still have it today. The thing that I took away from that class was the fact that very few could draw well. I didn't feel like the only one. And I liked to invent my own special way. It translated into sculpture. 

But the real lesson I learned was that I was an improviser. Again and again, I had to take what was given me and do something with THAT. I couldn't get any kind of satisfactory result OR experience from making a plan and executing it. That was not the message I wanted to hear. It has taken me a lifetime to appreciate the gift that that lesson is.

 

VIVEKDURGULE97  How much money do you plan to collect for your project on kickstarter? 

DAVID DELANY  The $$$ goal is purposefully low, just to cover costs for the production of 20 books. The campaign's purpose, as it is turning out is two-fold. 1) To get my feet wet with this process that is Kickstarter & 2) COLLABORATION, giving from the heart is of such profound value to a human being that NO AMOUNT of $$$ can buy it. This is another BIG lesson I hope you have the great joy to realize for yourself. Become a collaborative artist on ColorAndDraw.org...Let someone color your drawing or color someone else's work. Believe me, just do it...or Don't NOT do it in your life. It is natural, even if it is not habitual or even encouraged and valued around you. You don't live around you. You live inside you. And inside you is a heart and that heart gives blood every minute of every day. It's asking for nothing but the opportunity to give it with LOVE and it is a HAPPY heart that takes THAT opportunity. 

 

Nice question. I recall a very special experience...one of many. This one has photos to back it up. I am in a place in upstate NY called Flat Rock..I am 2-3 years old..the river there has cut channels into the flat rock and the water, warmed by the sun on the stone, has smoothed the surfaces completely, the depth of the channel is about 18 inches. My mother leaves me in this paradise to play by myself. Hours pass, and I am never bored, always enthralled with the water, the flow, the solidity, the warmth, the tactile wonder of it all the sound, also. At the time "swimming" for me was putting my ear in the water...wonderous experience. ..LIFE! That moves me to this day.

but it turned out to be a blessing. Every bit of empathy that I have for you and everyone, especially myself, I owe to my depression. It turns out to be my greatest ally without which I would never have been able to connect with my childlike humanity.

 

GEEKEEME  What tips can you give a beginner artist?

DAVID DELANY  I am going to skip the subject of connecting with your humanity and being the best person you can be because I don't believe I can change anyone or am in a position to advise or instruct. You be you and I'll be me.

If you are an artist there is no better (and no other time) to do it than right NOW.  I hope what follows helps.

BRAND YOUR ART 6 STEPS By David Delany

383 words david@daviddelany.com

Newsletter subscribers to daviddelany.com have articles sent to them.

11/24/2017

The game has changed for artists. When I was getting started over 30 years ago, I made slides of my work and sent them off to galleries, who ignored them. I felt frustrated, I wanted to become a success.

"Success is what you are able to give not gather."

Today, an artist can circumvent galleries and build a brand with a smartphone and a laptop. Having this outlet contributes to the rich tapestry of life and is a good living if you value LIFE.

1) YOU are the brand.

Buy yourname.com as a domain at GoDaddy.com.  Do it today

2) Know how to open accounts and follow instructions.

It seems like a simple skill. It is. And you will be using it repeatedly, so keep it simple with a single user name and password. A strong password has letters, numbers, and symbols. Make one for credit card related accounts, Google and another for everything else.

3) Don't not do it.

There is an amazing world of possibilities out there, which you and I have no idea about till we look and see. Use your artist's peripheral vision to see the ‘something better’ that appears while you're on your way to your desired outcome. Keep what is useful and disregard the rest.

4) Get a cheap home computer and the biggest smartphone you can fit in your jeans.

You don't need expensive hardware. Once upon a time, I bought a $3000 iMac in flashy orange only to find you needed a paperclip to restart the thing. My current laptop and phone cost a combined $147.

5) Get familiar with your smartphone.

It is not smart and it's not a phone. But it's what you use to build your brand so become very familiar with it. Then turn it off and do the things only you can do. Be your best self.

6) Nurture and appease your curiosity.

Learn about everything you come upon that draws you to it. Nurture your interest and analyze your desire. Coax out the most present, creative, compassionate human you can at every moment. You have nothing to lose and possibly everything to gain. Don't not do it. Start to meditate daily. Be and stay aware of your body and mind.

Keep in touch,

 

DAVID DELANY Only Kids from 1 to 192 should apply.