Breaking the Art/Artist Stereotype
For too long, art has been given this elevated, almost holier-than-anything status in our culture. And people we call “artists,” stereotypically speaking, are people who dress in “artsy”-looking clothes (all black and berets are the cliche), who claim that no one understands their art, who seem to be just a little bit unhinged at times, who rarely go out into the world so as not to disturb their “creative process.” Right?
NOPE. Artists are everywhere, talented in many different art forms, and they are not all intensely focused people, or all hoity-toity about their art. And art can be found in all parts of life. In fact, Grandma’s herb garden is just as much an art form as any painting or dance performance.
Art is Everywhere
Our whole culture is full of art. Art is self-expression, not just talent in a particular subject that seems “artsy.”
It pains me to say this, being a math-phobe as I am, but even math has artistic qualities–ever heard of fractal geometry, for instance? And even the symmetry of a perfectly-solved equation has beauty in it (even though I might have no idea how in the world it got solved that way). People who create beauty in their worlds are artists, whether they are organizing the clutter out of your apartment or rescuing your workplace’s database from certain cyber-doom.
Art is Approachable
Art does not have to be created in a vacuum void of anything except your own thoughts. In fact, art can be created as a result of human interaction, even as a result of crowds of people. The susurrus of many people talking can sound like a bumblebee’s whirring wings, which might just put you in mind of “Flight of the Bumblebee,” and inspire you to create something based on that, for instance.
You also don’t have to be a particular kind of “focused person” to create art. Sometimes, the random doodles you make on a paper napkin could be inspiration for a design you end up using in your home office, for instance. Art is everyday and yet it transcends the everyday. I like to think art just makes regular life a little bit spiffier. ^_^
Art Can Be Done by Anybody
You can become an artist even if you don’t think of yourself as creative. Anything you do well, whether at your job, at home, or out and about, can be art. Shopping can be an art. Fixing computers or cars can be an art. Whatever you do that you have great instincts for and a large amount of technical knowledge of, you can transform that into art by lending your passion for it into every action and thought. If it expresses who you are (like if your ability to organize and save money lends itself to shopping on a budget), that is part of your art.
And you don’t have to have just one type of art in your life, either–I am expressed by many different kinds of art, from songwriting to blogging, from beading to web designing, and on beyond.
Try a Little Art for Yourself
Even if you don’t think you’re creative, even if you think art is for elementary school kids, how about trying some of the artistic pursuits available to you? The following list is a starter list, but feel free to come up with your own!
- Jewelry designing (beading, etc.)
- Painting and modeling gaming pieces
- Fabric crafting (sewing, fabric painting, etc.)
- Interior designing
- Car detailing/finishing
- Composing poetry
- Couponing (just not the “extreme,” lawbreaking kind)
- Short story writing
- Computer building
- Novel writing
- Web designing
- Dancing (ballet, modern dance, etc.)