Art in itself, has always been a very subjective topic. There’s many different styles and kinds of art – traditional, digital, expressionism, impressionism, modern, abstract… to name a few. While art is very flexible, when do you really label yourself as an artist?
I’ve always viewed the title of ‘artist’ as something that’s very exclusive. There’s some kind of air surrounding it. I always thought that the term ‘artist’ encapsulated someone who has dedicated their life to studying the craft. Perhaps someone who has done many gallery shows and exhibitions. Someone whose work is highly esteemed by many art collectors. Those are some things that come to mind when I look at the word artist.
When I was younger, say around 6 or 7, I remember my primary school teacher asking us what our dream occupation was. The very first thing I wrote was (yeap, you’ve guessed it!) artist. I just thought of someone who could paint and sell their work. Mind you, this was way before I even found my passion to paint.
Now, I wouldn’t say my dream job is to be an ‘artist’ (earning some pocket money from doing commissions has made me more than satisfied). I’ve noticed that my definition of ‘artist’ had evolved significantly… it became unnecessarily complicated.
Putting a box around the term is something very unattainable. Majority of people who pursue art as a hobby won’t end up selling in top galleries or end up as the next DaVinci. And that’s okay. The ability and tenacity to create is already a pretty cool thing! It demonstrates a sense of willpower to constantly improve and express.
Would I call myself an ‘artist’? I’m not really sure. When it comes to others, as long as they make art, I would consider them an artist, no matter how big or small. When it comes to myself, I feel that I need to ‘achieve’ a certain benchmark before I can become an ‘artist’. That box I’ve created surrounding this term is something that won’t open up overnight.
Whether or not anyone knows about your creations is besides the point. Though it’s a term I’m not entirely comfortable with using on myself just yet, I still stand by the fact that anybody who creates is an artist in their own right. After all, words are power.
Would you use the term ‘artist’ to describe yourself? Why or why not? Let me know!