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Talon Burris just finished his work. Like a wind sweeping through a musty hall, he felt that his piece would stand as a new standard for artistry. It featured what he maintained was a gargoyle, but it remained difficult to even determine this much. Green and grey smears looked like smoke had been applied to the canvas. No sense of light or harmony existed within the image. Burris smiled. He felt in his mind that that this was his greatest work. He had to tell his fellow artist and friend, Gimble Seddon. He popped up on his mobile device.
“Gimble. You’ve got to see my latest masterpiece.”
“Yes this is the greatest thing that I’ve ever done. You’ve got to bring Salia, too. She’s going to love it more than you.”
“I see you’ve already got on your salesman cap. I’m almost done my own work. I’ll see you soon.”
Once Seddon had arrived at Burris’s studio with his wife Salia, the couple greeted the eager artists.
“Please, step right this way,” Burris said.
A sheet laid over the image. He unveiled the work with a flourish and a flair. The large canvas displayed the harsh lack of light and symmetry.
Seddon’s and Salia’s faces showed out and out disgust.
Burris smiled, then soured. “What is it? Doesn’t it represent the current dark age that we’re living in right now?”
“Why, yes. That’s the problem. It’s... horrid, sir.”
“Surely you don’t mean that, Gimby.”
Salia, a producer of paints and other tools for artists appraised the piece as well.
“It’s far too ugly to leave this room, Talon. It’s difficult to even look at it for extended periods of time.”
“Salia... I’m hurt,” Burris said.
“This is no worry, Talon,” Seddon said. “You can look at my piece and maybe become inspired.” He produced his tablet and the painting that he had been working on for the past few weeks. The portrait displayed in abundant light the heads of companies. These CEOs, in precise shapes and forms, appeared to be models of confidence and self-esteem.
“I can see where the contrast is,” Burris said.
“I’m just trying to reintroduce you to the proper way of conveying color and light like in your past pieces. This is just to show you that it is possible to illustrate the leaders of corporations as the exemplars of productiveness. Hell, if it were not for the so-called ‘Robber Barons’ who were actually extremely productive individuals, writers, filmmakers, and actors, physical artists like us would never have the power to be financially secure within our work.”
“But shouldn’t we try to capture the darkness and the ugliness of our times?”
Seddon shook his head. “No, Talon. We ought to project the best within man and deliver to the viewer a spiritual renewal of how they can be inspired and motivated through images.”
Salia walked closer to the painting. “This is one of the worst things that I’ve seen from you. You can’t just take the times and splash them upon the canvas. You should be taking the goodness, whatever is left of it in the world, and presenting it through your art.”
Burris then took a painter’s edge knife and charged after Salia. She screamed. Seddon stood to protect her, but Burris rushed past both of them to the canvas and slashed at it like an axe murderer. Vicious rage spilled out before the couple. Burris sliced and cut through the work as if it were some beast that attempted to attack the three of them.
Burris was panting and covered in sweat. “That is how you kill an artist.”
“But there’s still room for your future works to live,” Seddon said.