White crayon

06 September 2011

The white crayon doesn't show up until you have a 16-pack of crayons.

What is it for anyway? Crayola said it's for 'advanced coloring techniques', where you were supposed to highlight glossy surfaces or emphasize a chiaroscuro, but what kind of pre-schooler would come up with such a concept? I don't even see a kindergartner saying chiaroscuro correctly.

The white crayon. Basically useless, very neutral. It sits at the edge of the 16-crayon pack, waiting to be used. No doubt that after some usage, the white crayon will be the sharpest, most crisp, while all the other crayons have shown dullness due to repeated use.

The crayon has its own brilliance though; a hidden one. Just like how it was supposed to be used to emphasize shading, the white crayon serves a higher purpose. It is not meant to be used or even understood by normal people. Only a chosen few can understand the significance of the white crayon, and when they do, they unleash a masterpiece.

It has its own time, when some artist uses crayons to work on something extravagant, something life-like. It is when the white crayon becomes essential. It rises above the purpose of toddlers using it to create rugged crayon drawings and becomes a tool to enhance, to accentuate, to beautify. It has its own time, when art finally becomes art, an authentic appreciation of the visual world, a symphony of colors orchestrated in the hands of the artist. And in between this mélange of hues and shades, the shades of the white crayon bind them together, make them cohesive, or draw the boundaries between one color and the other.

It is then that the white crayon does its job. Unfortunate as it may seem, the white crayon is the underestimated knight of the crayon box, whose real purpose is only known to a few. Often misunderstood, the white crayon symbolizes everyone whose real potential haven't been tapped, those whose brilliance will someday break the twilight of the world's dismal, repetitive drudgery.  A day will come when all the world's hidden talents will emerge and bring forth the real ability mankind has.

What was hidden shall be seen. The white crayon, inert as it may seem, does actually have a purpose. And it's one that is the most artistic of all: to impart beauty onto the world.

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