Attack of the Maximal or Leave Me Alone, I'm Turning Minimal

Industrial Place, originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

Why is it that, every time I want to go and get all minimal, everybody comes at me with busy work? It’s like some form of rebellion, I tell you.

The other day, I was talking to somebody, and I said, “yes, I’m thinking about doing a small series about rituals. I’m thinking about using a white ground and then putting…”

“Red,” was what she said to me. “You should use a red ground to really liven it up.” Red? Red? Ok, I guess it makes sense, but still, I want my white. I want my plain, I want my simple, uncluttered, peaceful, serene, empty. What’s wrong with that? Why does everything have to look like some kind of color explosion? Why does every photo I look at have to have no less than 200 objects in it? Why can’t we just shoot one thing and shoot it well? Even keep it simple for a change? I want my minimal. I want my minimal and I’m not going to stop screaming about it until I get it. Damn you people, must you try to fill my life with all of your cluttered crap? What’s wrong with just some plain white, or maybe a soft blue, or easy-going pink every once in a while? Why not put some SPACE into your damn compositions for a change? Must we have 14 colors none of which match? Must we have 20 objects in our still life drawings? Can’t we celebrate the empty for a change instead of squeezing out every last drop of artistic real estate?

Ok, maybe I’ve had enough of a rant for today. But, still, I’ve never been one to paint with more than maybe four colors on my palette. I’m one of those painters that, since I can hold four brushes in my hand at any given time, paints with four different colors. Four different colors-that’s it. I see all of these people with like 15 and I’m thinking, “what the hell are you doing? Huh? Why so many?” I just don’t get it.

The other day somebody asked my advice about a painting. Now, she’s typically an abstract minimal kind of a painter so I though, yeah, ok, this is going to be good-this will make me happy. She said she was going in a “new direction” and I thought, oh great, this is going to be even better than her last work. I can’t wait to see it. Well, when the cloth was pulled up, there were so many colors, it looked like a Volkswagen full of clowns just pulled up and vomited. Really. I mean, what am I supposed to say? I like white. And simple browns. Earth tones, maybe a little pink. But, fourteen colors? HELP ME!

Why is that, when I go and try to get all minimal, the universe appears to conspire against me? Why am I always surrounded by “maximal” people? Where do these people go at night? Is there like some kind of convention? Please tell me so I know to avoid it in the future, ok? Maybe there are maximal “vampires” out there who go around biting people and then they have the sudden urge to add twelve more colors to their palettes or fill up their camera’s viewfinder with no less than twenty two objects because, you know, twenty one just isn’t enough.

Meanwhile, somewhere in a dark and distant corner, Carol sits quietly, pounding her fists and getting ready for her next nervous breakdown.

Oh the humanity! What’s wrong with you people?!?

Until next time…



  1. Elizabeth
    November 3, 2009 / 3:27 pm

    Sometimes I crave simplicity too. People like to throw complexity into even the most mundane of choices. I picked out white dishes, and people wanted me to get this pattern or that–ahh!

  2. Carol
    November 3, 2009 / 5:26 pm

    Welcome, Elizabeth!

    See now I like white dishes because you can see what you're eating, as opposed to getting blinded by patterns. I have a theory about this too. It seems like everybody I know who knows how to cook really well has plain white dishes and everybody (like me!) who doesn't cook all that well has all kinds of colors (I have fiesta dishes in tons of colors because, well, I'm that bad at cooking. :~)

    So, forget the patterns and tell everybody that you're a good cook so you don't need fancy dishes. :~)

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