If you've been a OMM artist for any length of time then you're sure to have been paid a visit by Joe Montgomery. Born in Sweden, but now living in Canada, Joe is one of the most active members of the community and has earned over 560 comments for his beautifully executed wood scene, and currently tops the leaderboards for the highest number of referred friends. The fact that Joe is an oil painter is clear from his OMM contribution in which he litterally uses the mouse to move colour and light around his image.
We caught up with Joe to ask him some questions about his involvement in the project
Are you involved in the arts outside the One Million Masterpiece project? If so what fields?
I am a landscape artist. My medium of choice is oil on canvas but I do like experimenting with other techniques and mediums.
So how did you hear about the One Million Masterpiece?
On a Swedish art website, diggiart.se .The artist and Webmaster Conny Arvidsson is working hard to give the One Million Masterpiece more exposure in their forum. Besides Conny I know a few other contributing artists from there.
Why did you decide to join?
Art is what I do and I always like trying new things so it was a pretty quick and easy decision to join in and be part of the "largest universal art collaboration ever created in the history of mankind".
Do you think you've benefited in any way from becoming involved?
Besides all the fun conversations and comments I have had, I feel comfortable saying: Definitely, it has exposed me to probably thousands of images, so far, many of which have left a trace in my mind. It is amazing feeling the energy of this project and I am definitely feeding of it. It is 99.99% good energy, welcoming all, to tap into it. I have seen so many great digital pieces that I have made the decision to by one of those tablets to try out.
Why do you think your contribution to the project is so popular?
hmmm. I don't know. My idea behind it was that it was a graphical metaphor for hope. Maybe people subconsciously like the light in the form of being around the corner. Hope.. There is something about going around a corner too or over a mountain ridge. The wonder. hmmmm well, I might be reaching, since there are many great squares to visit a metaphor can easily be missed. The shadows and lighting is ok too, I guess, and after trying the tools maybe people like the effort. I don't know. But I am honoured and happy to have had such a great response.
What, in your opinion, is the most important goal of the project? Do you think it will achieve this goal?
Because of borders and greed we live in the modern dark ages. It is darker for some than for others. On both sides of any conflict there will be unimaginable suffering. Every time a bomb or rocket hits a target, it kills a family member or a friend and about 3,4,5 fanatics are instantly created. Now, I stress the fact that this happens on BOTH sides. If it happened to me I know I would most likely become one too. With all this hate it is fairly easy for the conflict to feed itself. The hardest thing to do is to let go of this accumulated hatred. Even if, hypothetically speaking, it was decided globally, to end all conflicts in one and the same instance it would take 2 maybe 3 generations to let go of the hatred. During those 2 / 3 generations it would be very easy to slip back into turmoil.
How do you tell someone to just let go of the hatred, from the ultimate loss? Children's future will play a key role but if they lost their child it is hard to imagine them being able to let go of the hate. I think most of us, would not be able to.
The task of moving towards global peace is daunting. Every step towards it is very important. I think this project is one of those steps because, in a unique way, it shows people that in EVERY part of the world there ARE thoughts of unity, peace, love, and friendship.
NOT LAST YEAR OR LAST MONTH, THIS GOAL IS BEING ACHIEVED IN REALTIME.
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