This blog post is illustrated by students of the 4-week online workshop Inspirational Drawing. All the illustrations shown here are created at the class by these wonderful artists: Deb Weiers, Chrissie, CHB, Valerie Lima, Sandy Guderyon, Mary W, Gloria Schurman, Katia Maliantovich, Nea Wiseman, Gina Meadows, Joanne, Jacqueline Kriesels, Marie Jerred, Sue Rowlands and C in Ohio.
Let’s start the actual blog post with a personal question: Do you ever wonder whether you are talented enough?
I used to think that some day I will meet a person, both knowledgeable and prestigious, who would tell whether my art is good or bad. That thought made me both excited and worried. I became excited when I thought that someone saw more in my art than I did myself. And I became worried when thinking about the opposite result: that my art, that beautiful tower I had built, would just collapse. I would collapse.
Years went by and I got tired of waiting for a specialist’s opinion. Maybe I could be my own critic? I went to study industrial design to find out how the quality of art and design would be set. While studying I realized that there are no right or wrong. People are different. Some may like art that somebody else does not, even if they both are art critics.
Somehow that made me even more puzzled. I didn’t know what kind of people would be my people, who would enjoy my art. And furthermore, if my art was bad, there wouldn’t be many of them.
However, I became convinced that somewhere in the world, there must be people that want to use their imagination and design whatever they like. They want to build houses …
… they want to travel …
… they feel drawn to beautiful patterns, and dream about enchanting gardens …
They want to learn from the history and use it to move forward in their own direction.
The more I examined whether I have the talent, I realized that art is not an absolute in any way. Art is a channel to express and communicate. If I look outside the window, and let my mind wonder on a path, the question is not how dimensional the window frames look like or how grey the stepping tones are. I find my people by sharing how uplifting the coolness feels like when walking barefoot on a hot summer day.
Even if there are theories about aesthetics, originality, playfulness etc. which determine good art, it is the experience that matters the most. If we feel connected to our art, there are much more chances that others will too.
By strengthening our connection, we will become more talented. We start creating more and seeing more. We will have more to express and more imagination to use. We can make people calm down in front of our art, or make them run and catch thoughts about their possibilities.
Nowadays, many ask me whether they have the talent. Even before they actually start.
Here’s the answer: Your talent cannot be determined by the grades you got while you were at school. Your talent cannot be determined by an opinion of a knowledgeable and prestigious specialist. Art is not about talent. It is about having something to say and work for saying it. It is about asking “what if” and finding the answer by using both your life experience and imagination. It is about looking out the window, seeing numerous possibilities for the perspective, and bravely picking your point of view.
So, do you have a talent for creating art? Always.
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