The Potato Eaters

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75 years before I was born – The Potato Eaters creation began and took almost a year to complete.

What does The Potato Eaters have to do with my blog?  Well, some crazy dude decided poor ugly people are great subjects to paint.  Lucky for him, his craziness made for a very creative mind.  Yes, I am referring to Vincent van Gogh.

theguardian.com article ‘New study claims to find genetic link between creativity and mental illness’ includes the following –

The notion of the tortured artist is a stubborn meme. Creativity, it states, is fuelled by the demons that artists wrestle in their darkest hours. The idea is fanciful to many scientists. But a new study claims the link may be well-founded after all, and written into the twisted molecules of our DNA.

mnn.com article ‘Why genius and madness are connected’ includes the following –

Many of history’s most celebrated creative geniuses were mentally ill, from renowned artists Vincent van Gogh and Frida Kahlo to literary giants Virginia Woolf and Edgar Allan Poe. Today, the fabled connection between genius and madness is no longer merely anecdotal. Mounting research shows these two extremes of the human mind really are linked — and scientists are beginning to understand why.

I do not consider myself a very creative person, but yes I do consider myself sometimes to be mentally ill.  The major depression as a young man has left and never to come back again.  I do have my days that I feel ‘down’, but not depressed – though I may say I feel depressed.  I do feel however; I continue to have a mental illness.  I lose control of myself, I am a control freak, I am OCD, ADD, and I feel I have Borderline Personality Disorder.  But am I creative?  I believe that it is within me and I can be.  I may never paint a The Potato Eaters and sculpt a David or compose a Second Symphony, but I have created some awesome Christmas displays consisting of over 26,000 lights synchronize to music.  I have helped in creating some beautiful landscaping and my writing of my blog is decent.

It may be the bit of craziness in me has helped me to be creative.

vangoghgallery.com has the following –

In May of 1890, after a couple of years at the asylum, he seemed much better and went to live in Auvers-sur-Oise under the watchful eye of Dr. Gachet. Two months later, he died from what is believed to have been a self-inflicted gunshot wound “for the good of all.” During his brief career, he did not experience much success, he sold only one painting, lived in poverty, malnourished and overworked.

As a young man I made those attempts to end my life thinking it was “for the good of all”.  I am still here on this earth with a little creativity and a little mental illness.

Will I be well known someday like Vincent van Gogh?  No I do not think so: I have no The Potato Eaters to leave behind.

46 thoughts on “The Potato Eaters

  1. YouTube has song also with lyrics, that version is also good.
    I think you are creative plus plus. I also think you could focus more on your many strengths. Your journey has been arduous but now you can enjoy some of the whipped cream of life.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Van Gogh was the epitome of the tragic tortured spirit. Creativity is a double edged sword. Those that are creatives tend to be fragile. They tend to be self harming at some level and they tend to lack confidence. Tend to of course means that this is not an essential but rather a pattern that is common. You are certainly a creative. I recognise you from my own fragile perspective. Don’t let the demons rule you though they will always dance close to you.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Osyth, your words describe me completely! And your advice to not let the demons rule me are words I have told myself for many years. Thanks for understanding me, not many people do. Have a great day! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Van Gogh had a very hard time in life. Ever read about his life? That is depressing.
      Especially since he didn’t sell much of his work.
      His life was sad to me.
      Funny how you never get “knkwn” until you die. Then your paintings are worth a ton of money.
      A couple l loved the most was starry night and the irises.
      I didn’t care too much for the potato people… maybe he didnt like people much??
      His self portrait is much better. So, he could paint people. Maybe it was the way he saw people.
      You never know.
      Most of the great artists were pretty poor and got kicked around.
      Michelangelo was my most favorite. And he really got kicked around.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Karen, I have been told I am a good writer but never an excellent writer – I will accept the compliment. This was difficult for me – I am hard on myself! I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. I hope your day is a happy one! 🙂

      Like

  3. Well, Hell. Maybe we will both be a couple of the worlds most celebrated, creative geniuses! You are far ahead of me, though. Your writing is VERY creative. I don’t think you can possibly write about certain things…angst-filled things if you aren’t in some way damaged. I’ve been called crazy more than once…maybe I’m just in good company!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Terry, you don’t need ‘the potato eaters’ to leave behind. You are you, and I feel that you are quite hard on yourself 🙂 Sometimes I feel there is nothing wrong with a bit of crazy (lol), it makes the world go round, and you know what we are all in the same boat 🙂 Have an awesome day 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I think we all have a bit of ‘crazy’ in us! Highs and lows are part of leading a good life – if everything was always hunky-dory – how fun would that be!?? Embrace your crazy side Terry – I definitely think it makes us more creative! 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I am conflicted about the supposed link of creativity and genius to mental illness. Part of me believes that it is true – I have had inspired moments of genius in my career. On the other hand it seems harsh to exclude the vast majority of mentally ill people who are just average Joes. Most of my life has been filled with angst and OCD and regret but at least the bright moments give me highlights.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lol. I’d be careful these days to admit to some of these “mental problems.” Most people have a tendency to freak out and think those people should be locked up.
      I wouldn’t believe all the crap people write. It may be that some people are that way.
      Creative people are sensitive and some are quite caring. Does that mean they are not useful to society. No.
      Geniuses have a fine line between that and insanity.
      I knew a couple of them, but I never saw any type of insanity in them.
      I get depressed sometimes. But its who i’m married to. I never had it earlier in life.
      And as long as I dont keep hitting brick walls ( not literally ) I am fine.
      Stifling my creativity ( brick wall ) is very frustrating to me. Therefore, I get frustrated…some.
      I also use both sides of my brain. Hmm..wonder if that makes a person nuts too? Just kidding.
      But seriously, these days they may just come take you (people in general ) away.
      They seem to think those people will eventually harm someone.
      I have respect for other people and animals lives not to do dumb things. Look up ssristories.com
      No wonder some go off. The meds itself can do that.
      There is no real.actual way a person knows how much another person needs seritonin. All are.different. That site talks about it. It is a pretty interesting read.
      There needs to be a better way. One way can be nutrition. They did a study once on prisoners, the real bad ones and discovered that nutrition was a key factor. I am not surprised.
      Some may be genetic..who really knows?
      But, I like your creativeness myself. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • I agree with you about nutrition, I do think this influences us and I am sure part is genetic! Most likely many different factors involved. Thanks for your compliment, I appreciate your comment! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. We can’t all be Van Gogh, Terry, or the world would be full of pictures of ugly people! You write well and talents are so diverse. Value you for you, and don’t feel you need to compare or pigeonhole yourself. You have a lot of friends

    Liked by 1 person

  8. We can all be creative Terry, it is just a matter of us recognising it and doing something with it. Now personally I do not know about the lights to music but having seen the pictures of your home and read your blog, I can positively say that you are creative without a shadow of a doubt.

    Liked by 1 person

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