I was thinking about what to write for a post this week and remembered some conversations with people I’d had which I found confusing. It seems that some people think that creative people are of a certain type. I find it rather depressing and object to these sterotypes, lets share some of the common ones…
You Are Crazy
There is no doubt that art history includes some tortured souls such as Van Gogh and Munch, fraught with anxiety and hallucinations. However this is the case in every profession pretty much, it is just that artists express their angst through their work. Artists tend to be sensitive people and react to the world around them which can perhaps make them prone to disturbed mental health. Not all artists are crazy, but don’t be surprised if you are tarred with the same brush of insanity.
You Can’t Think Logically
I went to a meeting at work with other creative arts tutors and a new pay claim system was being explained to us. It involved putting numbers and codes into a spreadsheet. One of the tutors said unhelpfully ‘we are artists, we can’t do technology and paperwork‘. Wrong! I consider myself very good at paperwork and spreadsheets. There is an assumption that if you are good at art you can’t do numbers or think logically, this is just not true.
You are Messy and Unorganised
I am the cleanest and most tidy person I know but I also enjoy being messy. It is possible to create art in a orderly fashion and tidy up afterwards.
You are Starving
I do know some artists who are poor and I know some people who aren’t artists who are poor. I also know some artists who are comfortable. I remember my Lecturer at art school saying that I should get an unskilled part-time job so I could concentrate on my art. I didn’t see why just because I wanted to do art I had to get an unskilled job? I decided I would get a part-time skilled job and concentrate on my art! Of course there are also many areas of art that are lucrative such as the tech arts.
In short, artists come in all shapes and sizes, so lets not perpetuate with these unhelpful sterotypes.