Sunday, November 20, 2005

Illustration Friday: Free




Hello folks,

First off, I want to thank you for the positive comments and encouragement for my last couple of entries into Illustration Friday—it means more than you can imagine.

Secondly, this week’s entry is a definite departure from the last few weeks of turkey noir, killer pumpkins and beat downs via remote control. When I saw the topic was free, the first thing that popped into my mind was freedom—specifically those guaranteed to citizens of the US by our founding documents.

Since 9/11, our freedoms have come under attack, and not from some Islamic whack-jobs who believe 72 virgins are waiting for them on the other side (wouldn’t you have loved to see the look on their twisted little faces when they found out what was really waiting for them?). And not just from our current administration, who believe that by giving the FBI the ability to search our library and phone records without our knowledge they are increasing our civil liberties. No, gentle readers, the threat comes from us—the you and I that forget who actually runs the government.

Without going into a long history lesson (Carla is much more eloquent than I am when it comes to combining lessons with art), the consent of the governed means that we, the citizens, allow the government to exist, and we can take that right away if we so desire. To quote Mr. Jefferson and company from the Declaration of Independence, 'whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends (Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness), it is in the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new Government, laying its Foundation on such Principles, and organizing its Powers in such Form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.' That’s powerful stuff.

I am not saying it’s time to rise up and be destructive or stop paying taxes, but I am suggesting that the next time you shake your head about something an elected official does, remember that you allow them to behave that way. And, like wayward children, sometimes politicians need to be redirected to the right track. And sometimes, the politicians need to be fired.

Ok, all that being said, this piece represents the freedom of religion (and the freedom from religion), the freedom of expression; the freedom of the press; and the freedom to petition the government for a redress of grievances. All the freedoms adorn a shield that protects the governed. I did this completely in Painter IX.

Thanks for reading. As always, your comments are welcome.

Tony

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23 comments:

Twisselman said...

All I can say is, yes. Yes to everything you said and yes to everything your illustration represents. Well-executed, as well.

Mose 120 said...

Real cool post, well put Tony

raim said...

At first i don´t like your Ilu...and jump to next link...
But now and after i read your text (i didn't at first time) understand why.
It´s to dark... and gives a wrong idea...
Seems a symbol of repression...
Don´t get me wrong... i love your idea...and your work.
:o)

carla said...

Right on, Tony! You express some important ideas here, especially at a time when so many people feel so frustrated. From an artistic point of view, you crest is very well done. At first I thought you created this with gold cord and then scanned it...I'm quite impressed that you did this in Painter. It really looks like a fabric crest! And...thank you for the mention:> You're a sweetie!

scott said...

as soon as you realise that the islamic whack-jobs and the whack-jobs that are running your place come from the same place and get their power and cash from the same place, you will make some progress in freedom.
this doco by the BBC is a good place to start
(if there were any islamic persons involved at all in 911, I'm yet to be convinced. Marvin Bush was certainly in it up to his eyeballs)

scott said...

oh, and thanks, by the way, for coming by my illo and commenting
:)

Trout Fishing on Oahu said...

Artistic critique first: I really that you did this in the form of an embroidered crest—great idea. As for your commentary, I couldn’t agree more, though I particularly like your point about the responsibility that comes with these freedoms; that democracy is hard work and that freedoms can slip away. One answer to this is to be vigilant, be aware, be informed. Your offering (among others’) reminded me that there many in this world who are not free, inspiring to post another piece. Thanks for your comments on my first “free” post.

isay said...

what a lovely embroidered crest. Well done with the texture. I may not be an american but I have but I grew up being affected by all the things that is happening in USA and I agree with all the things you have said. Thanks for sahring it with us.

Caroline said...

Tony, you'v really caught the thread with this one - in both illustration and word.

anthony said...

nice work, a very unique illustration for the topic, and most definitey enloyed the added commentary.

LDahl said...

I have noticed more and more people are starting to question just what IS going on. Complacent government is starting to get a few well aimed questions and kicks in the booties. If freedom is what we believe in for people around the world, we had better start waking up while we are free enough to ask those all important questions.
Good illo!

Alina Chau said...

coool idea, nice illo

Jim said...

Nice work Tony! I echo the sentiments of the others who commented. You did a nice job on the illo, and the commentary.

Wilnara said...

Bravo!!!! Why has religion and politics become such a taboo!!!! Some individuals have stop thinking - some fear - some are caught up in the monotony of living life. What we fail to realize as individuals is that we are slowing but surely becoming inferior- powerless!!! Tony- I dont have to say but, a job well done in words and in thoughts!! Great Work!

Chan Wah Chen said...

The crest expressed your ideas well. Very impressive illustration and text.

Pusha V said...

Nice work!

Jaimie said...

Great job Tony! I agree with you completely. Let's start our own militia! The criminals need to be driven out of power!

Tony LaRocca said...

If the intention ever was for the people to run the government, it was superceded a long long time ago. Great picture though.

hartini said...

Strong emblem that goes with a strong write-up. I will have to agree with you on your say!!

Christine Lim Simpson said...

Interesting take on the subject. Stay cool! ;)

Knitting Painter Woman said...

The silent ones are regaining their voices, no? I, too, agree that the ability to make choices is what keeps us feeling free. And, I think that for a government that operates by consent of the governed to work, the governed MUST be well educated. Liberal educations for all. Including science, math, comparative religions, logic... I could go on....

Kevin "The Great!" Douglass said...

So one day I was watching law and order in television induced haze. Jack Mcoy is standing in front of the Supreme Court and announces "You have only those rights which you can defend!"
This article dear Tony, reminded me of that statement. Our government takes what we do not defend. The Tragedy and the Nobility of it is that we must spend our lives and ultimatley give our lives to protect our lives.

You Rock!
Kevin Douglass
"Imagine all the Jerry Springer Fans roaming the streets if there were no TV"

Ian T. said...

Tony, amen, brother! In Australia at present our basic freedoms - to speak, to be charged before arrest, not to be detained or deported unfairly - even the right the work reasonable hours and earn a decent wage - are all under attack like never before. We have a government that can do whatever it wants, and it's truly scary!

Your picture is an eloquent depiction of the concept. I particularly like the inclusion of the electric chair, an insanely cruel device that, like the death penalty itself, has no place in any civilised society.

It is important to remember that capitalism and democracy are two different things, and driven by often opposing forces...