I have taught hundreds of learners and I’ve noticed certain thoughts and ideas that act as barriers to achieving and in some cases even trying in art.
1. ‘I Can’t draw’
I have heard this countless times! I translate it to ‘I haven’t tried‘. Everyone can draw! Some of us have decided that what we draw isn’t good enough. Who told us that? Often it comes down to bad experiences at school, a very limited idea of what ‘good’ drawing is or comparing ourselves to others. Mainly it boils down to ourselves and the idea that we have decided we aren’t good enough.
2. ‘I’m not creative’
This one is nonsense, everyone is creative. It is just that some of us haven’t explored our creativity, being creative is part of the human condition. One lady kept insisting she ‘wasn’t creative’ in my class yet she was a very talented gardener and she liked showing me pictures of her garden. I suggested the idea that she must be creative in order to put such wonderful colours, textures and shapes together in her garden. She didn’t see that her gardening was a creative activity, she thought she just was very knowledgeable about plants. Once she realised that she was able to be creative in the garden she dropped the idea that she ‘wasn’t creative’ and started transferring this creativity into her art.
3. ‘I will never get good at this’
Learning to draw and paint can be frustrating there is no doubt about that, no one is going to become a master painter overnight. It will take time and lots of practice, ‘mistakes’ and learning, but the journey is fun! Are you setting unrealistic goals for yourself? Many of my learners do, this steals the enjoyment from the activity. Even experienced artists are still learning, it is a journey.
4. ‘I haven’t got time’
I hear this from so many people, yet they are the same ones who will spend five hours a week watching television or looking at Facebook. It is about priorities, ten minutes drawing a day is not really that much of a time commitment. If you want to do art, you will find the time.
5. ‘It is expensive’
Good art materials aren’t cheap but there are ways of doing art on a budget. You can keep the materials simple and just have the essentials. Have a look under ‘Art Materials and Resources’ on this blog for some tips. In fact I think the price of art materials has come down over the years, as there is more choice on where to buy. There are so many places online and offline to purchase materials and there are ways of cutting the costs, I will be writing a post about art on a budget. For example you can use DIY stores for some of the materials (drawing boards, masking tape for example) rather than art shops.
Also see my post 6 Common Problems with Artwork for more advice on this topic.