I have been illustrating basically all my life. From desk tops and school books in elementary school to commissioned walls for Christmas in Jr. High to wall posters and newspapers in High School. I loved it. It was who I was. But I never really knew much about the "Art World", or art history, until I got to college. That's when I became really "introduced" to art. From Warhol's soup cans
to abstract sculptures, the high standards of the Renaissance to the hard work and immaculate detail of people like Frank Lloyd Wright and Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
At first I was shocked. Certainly, there was a lot of art that was clearly "art"... good design, well-thought out pieces. But there was other art that was, well... shocking to me. Shocking that it was called "art". See, I was always told to follow my talent. If I could draw, then art was the obvious avenue for me to persue. If you sing good? You'll be a singer. Work well with tools? Then you'll make an excellent architect. You get my point.
So you can imagine my surprise when I at last began to learn about art and the vast myriad of what is considered "art". Standards change. Artistic styles fluctuate nearly as rapidly as fashion trends. A child working hard to hone their sketching skills to perfection has to struggle to find their place amongst new "ideas"... like this:
"Odalisk" by Robert Rauschenberg
So, you can see that what the majority called "art" was really not what I expected. It seemed that provacative or crazy stuff won out over true drawing skills. Put a rooster on a box? You end up in a museum. Draw a person's face in perfect detail? You end up on a street in Manhattan, trying to get people to pose so you can sell a drawing to pay your rent. Talent no longer seemed to hold the weight it did back when I drew "wonderful" pictures in school.
Alright, I've gone on enough... weigh in, please. I know I'm not the only one out there with an opinion :)
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