Hot Springs In The Mountains by RickGriffin

Hot Springs In The Mountains


31 May 2014 at 17:51:17 MDT

X-posting this whole blah blah blah from Tumblr because sometimes I think about these things. I drew this picture because this sort of stuff helps relax me and I kinda need to relax after Confuzzled.

This is probably a good bit of vent art (vent art in that it helps me relax back into my zone so I can be productive rather than just stressed) to explain a little about the fantasy headspace that exists when we create worlds.

See, we all (probably) tend to have fantasies where consequences to desired activity are mitigated or ignored. This can range anywhere from simple desires—such as the desire to have stark beauty surrounding us—to complex desires—such as the desire to have meaningful interpersonal relationships with people without the threat of being exploited or hurt as a result of them. These seem vastly different but they tend to tie together in similar ways; for instance, the social binding of remaining covered in front of other people is, to some people, inconsequential, but it’s a small stress compounded upon other stresses, a process we have to force ourselves to make automatic so we’re not rejected, and as such clothing becomes a defensive symbol that protects us from being hurt.

Protection from being hurt is good, but it also diminishes us as we become isolated; vulnerability is a risk, but it enriches us as we become connected.

Hence, the fantasy can (in this instance at least) play with that desire for connectivity without the possibility of serious injury that could result. The connection is built right in, almost effortlessly, in contrast to how much effort we need to put into our own real-life relationships. That’s where we start to yearn, and in part its fantasies like these that drive us to the sorts of connections that make us bigger than ourselves, even if on the surface it seems a bit selfish or self-indulgent.

It feels indulgent because this innate desire arises within the space of our own minds, and when the fantasy makes contact with the world, it becomes much harder to realize. But hopefully, maybe, on some level we can push beyond just fearing how difficult it is in an attempt to make it somehow real.

Submission Information

Visual / Traditional


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    Thanks for posting this here. Good read.

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    I loove your art~ :D

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    A very nice scene and some wise words to boot.

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    You summed up a lot of my feelings about clothing and nudity really, really eloquently.

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    I can't tell if I like the piece or the explanation better.

    Both are fantastic (and fascinating).

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    A lot of story telling going on in this picture. I'm drawn to the pair in the background. The cat and the tigress. Their expressions and that touch to the face wither larger hand tells a lot that makes me wonder what they are speaking about. Especially since there looks to be some concern going on there. I also really like the raccoon's face in the foreground on the left. Don't know why, must be the way you draw eyes and just the little crack of the mouth.

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    I'm curious about what's going on with the cat and the tigress in the background, mostly because it looks adorable, also because two of the people in the hot spring are staring at them :P

    I guess art is always open to interpretation so there's no definitive answer; my take on it just from what it looks like is (or maybe just the way I like to imagine it) is that the poor kitty is nervous about going into the hot spring and is really shy, and her tigress is trying to comfort and reassure her, or something, and apparently she's kind of inadvertently making a scene.