Friday, 28 June 2013

Against a dark background

A few weeks ago author Iain Banks passed away, taken before his time by cancer. His work has been a part of my world for almost all of my adult life. He wrote and released a novel a year throughout his career and I am very sad that I no longer have that yearly marker to look forward to.

Last night I watched an interview with him, purportedly his last one, and it reminded me of how well he bestrode two literary fields. While his mainstream novels were critical and commercial successes, every second year he wrote science fiction as Iain M Banks and although those works did not meet the same level of success, they nonetheless were a game changer in their genre and something Banks was hugely passionate about.

Four drying limited edition prints of '51 Plymouth.
Among all the other feelings I have about his life, his philosophy and his work, there is something that is personally very inspiring in the way in which Banks carved out his double success. He proves that a creative individual can have more than one identity.

It is a dark and rainy Friday afternoon, at the end of a week that has not been overly troubled by sunshine. Following last weekend's Art Market, this week I made eighteen new linocut prints from three designs, adding to the other new ones I made last week. Planning for the Art Market brought home to me the realisation that my abstract art and my illustration are not necessarily suitable for the same audience.

Like Iain Banks, I have more than one identity as a creator. Unlike Iain Banks I do not yet know how to manage my differing identities. This is something I want to give some thought over the coming weeks. If anyone has any ideas, I'd be very happy to hear them!


  1. Stewart W Bremner?? Kiddin' on. Yeah everytime I'm in North Queensferry, just over the hill from me, I wondered if I might bump into the man and have a drink discussing GSVs and AI. Bummer, but I loved his attitude to the whole thing in the end.

    1. If only I had a middle name… His attitude was really inspiring and I hope if I should ever find myself in the position, I could achieve such an outlook.

      Back in the real world, I think I might need to pick a name that describes what I do. Hmm.