For the Art of It

The other day, I stumbled upon the HBO series, Masterclass. I was reluctant to view it at first because I don’t typically watch documentaries about art. However, since nothing else on tv interested me at the time, I settled down to watch an episode on OnDemand. That led to me watching several episodes, one after the other. In a word, Masterclass is fantastic. Each episode features a well known working artist who mentors a group of young student artists. It’s a fascinating look into the artistic process. So far each mentor has inspired the young artists to work outside of their own imposed artistic boxes.

Upon viewing Masterclass, I wondered what would have happened if I had devoted myself to developing my art.  As a child I was happiest when drawing, reading or writing. I was highly excited to learn to play the recorder at school and had dreams of one day learning the piano, violin or the flute.

But I have this annoying practical side to my personality so I told myself to indulge my interests in career-worthy ambitions like the sciences and treat everything else like a hobby. I suppose I can blame this sense of practicality on being a first-born child who understood a little too well what a lack of money meant. I was also the official family smarty-pants who was meant to go further in life than her parents had.

So I ask the eternal question, “What if?”

Yet, I know the truth. I am highly impatient with the process of making art. I have a brain that has me try to juggle several ideas at once, scarcely finishing one project before starting another. Then there’s the fact that although I have a natural aptitude toward various types of art, I only ever dabble. I don’t think I could ever devote myself to just one thing. This is why I don’t think I could call myself an Artist.

However, whether or not I devote myself to art or call myself an Artist, there is value in me pursuing my creative side. When I create art, I’m forced to think outside of the box. I’m forced to see the subtleties and details of the world. And my art becomes a way for the world to see how I view it.

Watching Masterclass has done more than entertain any notions of artistic regret that may linger in me. It has reinforced the truth that life is only but a spell. Art is proof that we were here and that we had something to say. I’m inspired to leave sticky, artistic fingerprints behind on this Earth.

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Posted on July 6, 2010, in Random bits from my life, video. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I am also a first-born and the “official family smarty-pants who was meant to go further in life than her parents had” it’s a lot of pressure and it also meant no time to indulge fantasies of being a starving artist. I also wonder “what if?” but knowing me I would never be satisfied devoting my creative energies to just one thing. I’ve ‘dabbled’ in drawing, photography, jewelry-making, scrapbooking, now I’m trying sewing!

  2. After teaching speaking and listening for 2 years, the short art class that we gave to middle school students was the best project that I did thus far. The students let their imaginations go. It’s also one of the only classes where they concentrated so intensely on what they were doing. Go art!

  3. “I have a brain that has me try to juggle several ideas at once, scarcely finishing one project before starting another. ”

    I relate. It kind of scares me when I’m so into a project, and I get started, and so quickly I’m daydreaming of the next and kind of assing out on the present. What’s that about?

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