Monday, November 16, 2009

Art Rules!

If you're here to read my take on the SMarts London Social Media Un-Conference, scroll down. Sorry, but a more pressing issue has come up: Art!

And this blog will be at the top to-morrow, I'll move it, and it may grow. So, if you come tomorrow for my little follow-up to today's SMarts post, get ready to scroll again.

I don't know how anyone can get up in front of an audience and say that by the end of the week they have nothing more to share on the Net. This morning I checked where my hits are coming from, I put out a tweat and checked the Twitter feeds to which I subscribe.

I found the following tweat:
Put a snazzy new flash ellemusic player with my song "Let You In" on
Come listen! :)

If that address doesn't work once removed from its Twitter home, and I bet it doesn't, try the following link:
ellemusic on MySpace

Elle is a talented London woman who is now living in Scandinavia. How I discovered her site, I really don't know. But it is just such an eclectic site with a strong patina of "art" washed over it that even though I could not care less for fashion, I visit there now and then.

Elle is not just a good writer, photographer and graphics artist, she is also a musician. I believe she had a group in her teens in London. James Reaney might know Elle. He seems to know everyone even remotely connected to the arts in London (Ontario).

At the SMarts Conference the last event was a panel discussion on free art. Does giving away artistic creations on the Net, or worst having them simply ripped off, help or hurt the artist? There were two women and two men on the panel, all with both feet placed firmly in the world of art.

The speakers all had strong positions and presented them well but the one I liked best was the feisty one - an artist named Olenka. She saw the problem very clearly, unfortunately the world does not see what she sees. Olenka was not swayed. Taking stuff for free, stuff not offered, is theft. Period! And those taking the art are thieves.

Olenka said, "Lot's of people are making money on social media and it's off our backs - you people are patsies!" Olenka is out to change the world, to change the world's perception of what it means to take stuff for free from the Net - stuff that was never meant to be free. (I would add that if the artist gives the stuff away because they feel pressured, that is a digital world mugging. "Hands up. Hand over your zeros and ones, now!")

I like it.

Elle is sharing. Fine. But we must find a way to reward our artists. They civilize our world. Without artists, it's back to the caves - but if your cave is in the south of France it won't be so bad. The cave walls there are covered with incredible art.

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