Surely we would’ve found it by now?
I’m pretty sure that certain individuals (ahem) are trying to upend the format as much as possible when they get in the questionseat. Some people like to make things difficult. Occasionally, this makes me grumpy, but mostly it just makes me challenged.
Which is good, and hopefully something I manage to pass on to the illustrator.
There’s certainly texts that don’t have much visual stimulus in them, but the illustrators always have the option of being interpretive or abstract. There’s such a wealth of expression available, that something can always be constructed, and thankfully for me, it’s almost always something beautiful. Something that can distract from my hurried typos and mangled prose.
So I think there’s something for everybody. I’ve yet to stump an illustrator (and, more surprisingly, I’ve yet to be stumped myself).
The thing is, that even paradoxes and impossibilities are fun to explore. It’s not as if this place actually ever provides answers in any real way. I was looking yesterday at the visitor stats since day one. Basically, lots of people have found this blog after actually typing in the exact questions into google (or whatever). Some questions, obviously, get more hits than others (‘How many roads must a man walk down, before you call him a man?’ is top of that list). I doubt many of those people end up feeling like they’ve been answered.
But, well, answers isn’t really what it’s all about. It’s the art of asking questions, observing things, and trying to explain them. Through any medium possible.
Every part of unstruck is, to me, vital. The questions give life to a text which inspires an image (which enhances the text, which makes you think about the question again; it loops round).
And it’s about creativity, which means there is no end, and no impossibility.
I’m sure there’s times when illustrators curse me. When they look at my prattling and roll their eyes and wonder why they bother (I don’t know why they both, but I’m eternally grateful to them for it, they make this place magic, I think). But in almost a year and a half, nothing has ever ground to a halt.
When I started, I had two additional rules. I would try and always include a link, to avoid being too self referential (that stopped when I no longer had enough time to browse and research properly), and I would always try and include a visual hook or metaphor, so the illustrator had something to work with.
I’m lazy, I forget, and yet…well….have a look in the archive…there’s a lot of images there.
It’s inspiring. Dusty broken half awake texts bought to life by the creative breath of imagery. Talented individuals adding colour and meaning to 500 piece drivels.
I’m not cruel enough to try and make it difficult for the illustrators. But I don’t have to. Brains go abstract. I get caught in holes.
And they always dig back out.
Illustration by Kieron.