I wanted very much to share the words of a dear friend–and one of the most naturally gifted and original thinkers I know…a man of immense talent and great prospects, whose creative journey I am privileged to witness. So welcome to the first-ever guest blog on skydiaries. I’d like to introduce you to Blake Kay (his blog, thebeardgospel.wordpress.com has a promising beginning as it searches for its voice and its place.) The air is yours, Blake….

“It’s good, but you’re really wearing your Grant Morrison on your sleeve.”

I was told this once, about seven years ago, by a then struggling comic book artist who now works with Grant Morrison. Who’s Grant Morrison? He’s a writer, and one of my greatest influences.

When I began this peculiar journey of putting my thoughts and ideas on paper so that an artist could flesh them out and make them into a thing of sequential beauty, I had inspiration from those who came before me. The trouble was that rather than being inspired yet finding my own voice (a process which I still struggle with along different avenues), I was aping their style. And as that artist pointed out, it was obvious.

It was difficult to let go of that, to shed that conditioning of having read all those works and wanting to become that. I didn’t even know how to do it. What the hell was my voice supposed to sound like? And what if my voice was lacking… too hushed to be noticed? Too mediocre to be discovered?

Then I realized what I had to do: I had to surround myself not with the influence of those who do what I do, but rather surround myself with the influence of those who love what I do. And this was something I learned from my delicious partner in crime fighting, Melody, as her love and admiration and support has become my influence. My voice… MY voice… has grown from her song. She has charged me and stoked those flames of creativity that before were nothing more than lonely embers, ashen and dying.

And then there is my most wonderful friend and mentor, Lynn, who continues to challenge me, making me think inside the box when I’m defiantly, and at times to my own detriment, thinking outside the box.

I may no longer wear Grant Morrison on my sleeve, but I do wear Melody and Lynn in my heart. That’s love, baby. And you could NEVER ask for a greater influence than that.