Tuesday, July 15, 2014

I Don't Have the Right to Depict Women in My Art? WTF?

It has been pointed out to me that some in the genre world might find fault with the fact that I have created artworks featuring women. I was told that these people might argue, in a twisted form of logic, that I have no right to create art portraying women because I am a man. This seems to me to be an asinine argument. Where do people come up with these ideas?

I didn't know there were rules written in stone about what sorts of people artists could or could not portray in their art. Art is, by definition, a creative endeavour. Anyone who tries to say that I, as a male artist, am restricted in who I may or may not portray in my art, that I don't have the right to portray women in my art, is going to get an earful!

Male artists have been depicting female figures in their art for centuries. If past artists followed the absurd rules some in the genre world want creative people to follow, Leonardo da Vinci would never have painted the Mona Lisa, Michaelangelo would never have carved the Pieta, Edgar Degas would never have sculpted La Petite Danseuse de Quatorze Ans, John William Waterhouse would never have painted The Lady of Shalott, and so on.

One of the venues that sends me regular illustration assignments happens to be The Lorelei Signal, a web based magazine dedicated to featuring strong/complex female characters in Fantasy short stories. I'm proud of the work I've done for that zine, as well works featuring women I've done for other venues. Though I'm a male artist, I think I do a fine job of portraying female characters in a respectable and dignified fashion. Some of my best works are my works depicting female characters. I stand by the work I've done, and my right to do it.

Some examples of that work include:

My illustration for Lindsey Duncan's "Mythocraft" on the cover of Issue 2 of Plasma Frequency. 
My fantasy artwork "Conjuring the Dragon" on the cover of Issue 32 of OG's Speculative Fiction 
My sci-fi artwork "Under the Ice on Enceladus" on the cover of the July 2014 issue of Spaceports and Spidersilk.
My illustration for Joyce Frohn's story "Room 116" in the July 2014 issue of The Lorelei Signal.
My illustration for the Mystic Signals exclusive story "The Doom of Mounrshire" by Benjamin Sperduto.

My illustration for Mellisa Embry's story "After the War" in the January 2014 issue of The Lorelei Signal
My illustration for Rachel Acks' story "And Still Champion" in the January 2014 issue of The Lorelei Signal.
My illustration for Matthew Wilson's poem "The Old Witch" in the January 2014 issue of The Lorelei Signal.
My illustration for Erin Cole's story "Her Quest for a Beating Heart" in the July 2013 issue of The Lorelei Signal.
My illustration for Heidi Wainer's story "The Specters of Haveroan" in the July 2013 issue of The Lorelei Signal.
My illustration for the Mystic Signals exclusive story "Uncle Jusquin" by DeAnna Knippling.
My illustration for  Edward Ahern's story "Blood Will Out" in the August 2013 issue of Sorcerous Signals.
My illustration for Anna Sykora's story "The Oak Witch's Helper" in the August 2013 issue of Socerous Signals.
My sci-fi artwork "Giant Alien Bug Attack!", which appeared in the January 2013 issue of Beyond Centauri.
My illustration for Nyki Blatchley's story "Aslahkar", published in Issue 1 of Plasma Frequency:

My illustration for Alexander Gonzalez's story "Shade Creeper", published in Volume 3 of Postscripts to Darkness:
My illustration for Beth Powers' "Nothing Altered", published in Issue 4 of Plasma Frequency:
Anyone who might argue that I don't have the right to depict women in my art because I am a man has earned the right to fly my "Idiot Pride Flag", because they're a real turkey:

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