If You Hadn't Gone to Art School....

musket

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I doubt that going to art school is any guarantee of success. I suspect that many who go to art school end up in different professions.
 

musket

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896
Of course, this assumes that the type of art you make doesn't require a long period of mastering the use of your tools. Kinesiology is an important part of this kind of education. If you have no control of your tools, you will be endlessly frustrated trying to get the results you want to get, and often the difference between efficient tool usage and inefficient is in fact so small that it can be quite difficult to figure out on one's own. Once you've been shown the right way to use a tool, it seems obvious instead of baffling.

There are clear similarities between learning to use tools and learning to play a musical instrument. Playing a brush, which is a tool for making art, is essentially no different than playing a guitar, which is just a tool for making music. You can learn either on your own, but without a good teacher, you may end up wasting a lot of time reinventing the wheel. Before one can make art or music, one must first become comfortable with the technique of using tools. It is perhaps a good idea to admit to oneself at the start that there are people who know better than you how to do it, and not be so focused on creativity.

In learning anything, my approach was to take a limited number of lessons from very experienced teachers and then go off on my own.
 

Artyczar

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There were times I thought I would have liked to have gone on to a Masters and PhD in Art History or Literature... but then I look at the crap that goes on in academia that in some ways is worse than what we face as teachers in grade school. Honestly, I think that if I had it to do over I'd skip Art School and study at a private atelier where the emphasis is on mastery of traditional skills and not a lot of contemporary Art Theory and Criticism. Many of these ateliers expose students to the reality of being a working artist... including not merely how to begin and complete a painting, but also the business aspects.

I really think that's probably the best way to go about it.
 

Desforges

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729
What I liked about art school was to be around young people and the large walls to work on and huge tables and the equipment. I was older when I got a bachelor degree in Creation, not a teaching degree. To me it was fantastic. A four year vacation.
I loved to learn about the printing techniques and the separation of colour and photoshop. At the university I went to, you could spend the night in there. The seventh floor was for artists. We had security and had to sign in and out.
Contemporary art history was fantastic and the art market and the contemporary American painters. Even now, I would love to sit in these classes.
I was ready to do a masters degree when my 90 year old dad had a fall.
 
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