There are some extraordinary examples of talent within the OMM, of people who can use the simple paint tools to craft something that is more than just a picture. For an example of this we need look no further that the top of the all-time leaderboard – at Jason Knight.
Jason's image of his daughter is not the most complex, layered or detailed of pictures. In fact from a technical viewpoint it is below the average when viewed solely on the number of brushstrokes. So why have the community consistently rated it as the number 1 OMM contribution?
My answer would be Emotional Reaction. While the image benefits from pixel perfect composition and superb color selection, the subject matter is the key. It not only conveys a message about a child, but it conveys an emotional reaction in people that screams INNOCENCE. I can feel that little girl's awe as she faces into the wind, watching the clouds while trying to keep her little umbrella in her hands. She is lost in her own little world, and as I look at the picture, so am I.
How do you learn to convey this kind of emotion in a piece of art? Does it come from years of practice, or is it something deeper - past experience perhaps?
In Jason's case, we can gain an insight into his work by listening to the words of his wife, who has explained for us how Jason came to draw his contribution. We have watched HOW he drew his image many times, now let's hear WHY he created it:
Last year, while surfing on DeviantART, Jason clicked on a link advertising OMM. He quickly became obsessed, not only with creating a masterpiece, but also with viewing how other people created theirs. He wanted to paint something meaningful and struggled with what to paint for several months. Late one evening, while he was doodling in his square, his two year old daughter ran into the room. Inspired, he decided to paint her. The painting of his daughter, titled "Innocence", is a beautiful representation of what this project is all about.
Although Jason was born into poverty, neglect, and abuse, he recalls that art was always an inspiration to him. Jason says that art always gave him hope for a better future. "As a child, I remember drawing elaborate worlds where no child went hungry and parents didn't hurt their children." As a young man, Jason was adopted by a loving and caring family who took him away from the sadness. Did he regret having such a rough childhood? "I would not be as strong as I am. Do I regret my childhood? Not at all; it makes me who I am today".
Jason's profile page states: "What brings more joy to people everywhere? What's worth preserving our planet for? Why should we donate to a charity? Who do we trust with our future? The answer is... our children!".
Jason's story is inspirational and I, for one, am glad that his picture is so highly rated by the community. Not content with his incredible contribution however, Jason has also turned his attention to promotion of the OMM project itself.
After several weeks of tinkering, he has produced a wonderful promotional poster for the cause. In lieu of a monetary donation, Jason has donated his poster design to OMM.
A very much deserved thank you Jason – enjoy the spotlight.
Sat 5th Jan, 2008
That's so nice to read =) Jason is a huge contributer to this site, almost every picture I look at I see him commented! Stunning doensn't even begin to describe his square, it's so wonderfully simple, yet has a beautiful message to it. Congratulations!
You must log in to comment on this blog post. If you are not already a member, please register for free, click here.