Critical Review

“I’m of the opinion that critics and reviewers never consider the damage they do to the person who created the work. It would be nice just for once if they considered the work completed and enjoy it for what it’s. Remembering the artist or author is done the best they can to create something for them to enjoy.”

This story turns the above picture by Flo Dahm on Pexels.com into something hated by critics. I wish for my readers to know this has no bearing on Flo’s wonderful photo. I wrote this Story in answer to the following prompts:
MindLoveMisery Photo Challenge — the picture above
FOWC with Fandango — Unique
Your Daily Word Prompt — Abstraction
Ragtag Daily Prompt — Forward
Three Things Challenge #490 – Sense – Unrest – Air

Critical Review

Paul Turing was known for painting his unique and colourful landscapes. He always painted them with maximum eccentricity and abstraction. His fans always said he showed great creativity and forward-thinking. He showed the world how to work in a free and frivolous way.

Two hundred landscapes and three gallery tours later, Paul had grown bored of his unique subject matter. The inspiration had gone and he needed something different for his canvas. He scanned online art galleries and photographic websites for something to get his creative juices flowing again. He settled upon an image he never thought he would. He’d never painted anything that actually existed before. The challenge excited him as he prepared his easel and paints. He began with a midnight blue background which lightened toward the base. Paintbrush becoming a blur, he began adding browns and greys as a framework grew over his sky. He brought it alive with golds and yellows and then stepped back to admire his work. The Eiffel Tower glowing at midnight was stunning on his canvas.

Three weeks forward, Paul debuted the painting he called ‘Eiffel Night’ amid a collection of his landscapes at the Tate Modern gallery. Interested to see what people would think, he hovered nearby to listen. What he heard was growing unrest toward his work.

“Oh, dear. It seems Turing has lost the plot! This background is quite boring,” critiqued one lady.

“Indeed, I sense it’s unfinished!” reviewed another.

“It must be. Why even the angles and the cross-sections of the tower are incorrect. I’ve been there a dozen times, don’t you know,” put in one gentleman shaking his head at the painting.

Paul couldn’t believe his ears. He found himself growing annoyed by the comments. His landscapes were alien, to say the least, and yet people adored them. Now he’d abandoned the abstraction and gone for something more real; they hated his work.

“Good grief! The awful painter could have at least put a bit of the Paris skyline behind his ghastly tower,” said yet another unimpressed gentleman joining the group wearing a Harris Tweed suit. “Maybe it would have been a bit better that —”

“Excuse me, my good man. What is it you do for a living?” Paul questioned having waded out of obscurity.

“Who might you be?” questioned the man with a hand scratching his chin.

“I’m the awful painter who created that artwork you’re all dragging through the mud.” Paul folded his arms and glared at him.

“You painted this monstrosity? You’re Paul Turing?” The man gave an obnoxious laugh. “I’d put down your paintbrushes and give up if I was you, then.”

Paul ignored the jibe. “I’ll ask again; what is it you do for a living?”

“I’m a writer. I have ten bestselling novels; I’ll have you know.”

‘Perfect!’ Paul mentally rubbed his hands together. “When you finish writing and editing your manuscript, it’s ready to sell right?”

“But of course,” replied the writer.

“Right, so even though it has a few spelling mistakes, grammar issues, sentences that could have been written better — that book is now being sold as you intended, correct?”

“Sure, what are you getting at?”

“This painting with its ‘boring’ sky, slightly ’inaccurate’ framework and, lack of Paris skyline is 100% finished. It is exactly as I intended it just like your books are when you publish them. There are always flaws in a good book or a piece of art. However, so long as the writer or the artist is happy with it — Then it is perfect!” Paul paused to take a breath and control his emotions.

The writer made to speak but never uttered a syllable.

“I’m not done! The viewer or reader should admire the work as finished as intended and never tear apart. Every bad comment and review is like a dagger to the creator’s heart. And the lot of you tearing my perfectly acceptable painting apart, make me sick!” Paul glowered at the assembled group and stalked away leaving them in shocked silence.

He was smiling by the time he reached the exit to the gallery. His tongue-lashing would probably have little effect overall. At least he felt better about the situation and maybe those few people would respect an artist’s creations better in future.

The End


Thanks for reading my friends. There’s more in the Short Stories. and Short Stories 2 tabs.

Have a great day!

7 thoughts on “Critical Review

Add yours

  1. I agree that, especially when there’s a disconnect and a critic’s speaking only to a finished piece, it’s easy to forget the person behind it. Artists seem to face condemnation for any decision they make, but negativity when it morphs into cruelty is rarely productive when it’s purely for the sake of complaining

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely. We authors face it more than artists. We get critiqued on every word because there are too many rules and methods to write. Most of us get torn apart and thrown away because other decide our way is not good enough. Writers like me end up with a worthless bunch of words because others choose to hate it.

      Anyway thanks for reading, Tom.

      Liked by 2 people

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