Creative Collaboration: Vulnerability and Trust

10 Apr

Lizard King persuaded Blind Monk to return stateside with him. Undeniably, it was an easy sell. Our humble Thai acolyte is, after all, a product of the Bangkok streets. To spend a few months away from his disciplined community, and to re-connect a bit with his roots through Lizard’s world, felt right. And his Lama did not object. Anyway, how cool to visit the USA!

a young monk dances joyfully on a village street

Blind Monk celebrates his departure stateside with Lizard King

For Lizard’s part, he wanted to give back a little to this young man who had offered him a key to the veiled aspects of Pathome Asoke. What was it about Blind Monk in particular which facilitated this new kind of collaborative relationship for our usually independent, fully self-reliant Reptile?  Lolita shared a theory.

Consider a blind boy, poor, and of the street. Here is a vulnerable urchin who nevertheless displays fortitude, an ability to overcome physical challenges, to establish his turf. He becomes a metaphor for the struggle of the street. The blind boy can see, can perceive most clearly the condition of his impoverished, desperate community. The connection to Blind Monk was the connection with one’s own struggle, was the hope to overcome, the strength to hang tough.

Collaboration in general, which is largely about establishing some mutual reliance for the sake of some effort, seems, ironically, to be nurtured by the very vulnerability of the players. We see that our partner has weak spots. We are a bit more inclined to reveal our own shortcomings. Once each partner’s Achilles’ heal is revealed, acknowledged, accepted, then trust blooms, and the collaborative process begins. Once weakness is revealed, the collaboration offers opportunities for growth and powerful results.

In the arts, there is no artistic discipline fully self-sufficient as an expressive vehicle. In each creative presentation we accept the limitations of a medium, and focus on what works.  In certain instances, a multimedia collaboration can offer powerful leverage for the ultimate expressive impact of a work.

abstract portrait of pop icon Andy Warhol

Chris Mackie’s Andy Warhol portrait

Portrait art might be seen as an example of an artistic medium with certain inherent limiting elements that benefit from the leverage of creative collaboration. Portraiture often relies on a subtle mix of only a few expressive elements, such as facial expression, posture, clothing, to offer hints about the subject. When these elements are treated in a less than subtle manner, the portrait takes on aspects of caricature. Music offers a unique opportunity to give resonance to a limited and subtly blended pallet of visual elements while avoiding the potential of making the piece a cartoon. The multimedia presentation of Chris Mackie’s Andy Warhol Portrait at Audio Sparks for Art offers an example. The music amplifies the subtle expression of strength in Andy’s face, gives us strength and courage to hold with his challenging and somewhat hypnotic glare, and carries us to a joyful ending.


Leave a comment

Posted by on April 10, 2013 in creative collaboration


Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Mixed Media Art Group

A Group of Mixed Media Artists and Photographers

4am Writer

Survival Guide for Writers


Adventures in Watercolor Painting and Sketching, Watercolour Magazine, with Charlie O'Shields

Business in Rhyme

inspiring personal growth through poetry and writing

leaf and twig

where observation and imagination meet nature in poetry

Attila Ovari

Loving Life and Inspiring Others

Color by Klimbim

The Journey: Rediscovering Myself

Finding motivation to change my life for the better


Stan Stewart - the muse is present


Because if You're Going to Lie, Lie Yourself the TRUTH

John SterVens' Tales

Thee Life, Thee Heart, Thee Tears

Simple Tom

Some say I was born high. Others say i'm just simple :)

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.

The Evolution of Eloquence

Improving the English language one letter at a time


Just another site


Just Click It

LEANNE COLE - The Photographer's Mentor

Fine Art Photographer ~ Daring to be Different

%d bloggers like this: