I have always loved art. That has never, and I don’t believe will ever. change. From paintings or sculptures or drawings or less traditional forms of art like writing or typography.
Growing up, I always watched my dad drawing. The rare occasions we’d go out to dinner, we’d get the children’s menus that came with three crayons. With these three colors, he always created masterpieces on the backs of our menus.
His intricately detailed drawings surrounded by adolescent writing or tic-tac-toe or attempts at drawing simple things.
Or he would give us mini lessons about turning difficult pictures into shapes to make the drawing process easier. Surely a skill that would make drawing easier but, being stubborn, I always wanted to do it my way.
I had art classes starting in elementary school. Mrs. Reeder, which we all found ironic since she was the art teacher, always had such fun projects that really started my love for creating my own art. We got to explore so many forms of art from mirroring sketches or learning different painting techniques or trying music in our class musicals each year.
In middle school, I got a taste of music from a more technical side, joining the choir in sixth grade. It was a fun experience where I made some friends but ultimately it wasn’t for me.
I went back to more traditional art classes my seventh and eighth grade year. Starting high school, I took theater classes that gave me lessons on the technical as well as the acting parts of theatre. My senior year I took another art class and even practiced my art in the form of writing.
Each of these experiences happened after a long period where I didn’t do much art at all but was met with this new found love of creating. But each time, I still ended up falling away from art. I’ve been creating art for at least a decade and I don’t really have much to show for it. I have a ton of art supplies from different projects or different mediums that fell onto a back burner to more important things.
I still love making art and, while it sometimes takes me a little longer to get back to it, ultimately I always love what I am making. I know this isn’t an individual experience. It’s so common for people to experience this burn out or feel like they’re falling out of love with their own art or anything they’re passionate about.
But I never want to stay in this place. I always want to pick myself back up and get back into creating. Without art classes with incentives to do art, I have to find my own ways to find this love again.
My favorite way to get back into it, is to just create anything. Go into it with no expectations or plans. Just create anything. It might turn out terrible. Even better if it does. Bad art is still art. Bad art still means you created something.
There’s so much weight put on people’s creativity. If you create any form of art, it has to be monetized or be the next masterpiece. But art doesn’t have to have so much meaning or weight. Art can just art.
I never want to lose my relationship with art forever. I create art for myself and that’s enough for me to spend my time with it. It’s important for me to have this thing that doesn’t have to do anything more than exist.
If you haven’t created something recently, make something. Make ugly art.