Lately I've been thinking about when I had art classes in school. So I wanted to write a bit about my experiences.
Well, like most kids, I had art in elementary. We went to a different room for it....maybe once a week. I remember it being fun, something I looked forward to, but can't remember stuff we made exactly. I just remember the teacher being really fun and cool.
In junior high, I believe I took 2 art-related classes. They were fun and I remember meeting a lot of similar minded people...people I'd go on to high school with whom I thought were pretty cool. One guy I met back in the day (actually) put together one of the art shows I was recently a part of....so yeah, that was interesting. I don't think I had much of any kindof talent then....but everyone pretty much knew he did.
In high school, I didn't take an art class unti...jeez...11th or 12th grade (can't remember now). I do remember our first assignment-to make a collage that sums up YOU (at this moment). That was a lot of fun....and I knew then that I'd love to make more collages. (I even got an "A" on the assignment-woo!) But the class itself was not that interesting to me...I liked the people in the class BUT I found myself struggling with drawing & painting...because I never did either before.....then we were just expected to draw a face or a landscape. My landscape was very abstract (watercolors I think) but my portrait/face really sucked. I think I might have got a "C" in the class...but darn, did I get help from my dad & a really nice student in the class.
I remember in high school we got these stupid student books (like a small notebook) that was a planner and also used for teachers to write in (when we left class to use the restroom....ooooo nooooo!). It had a really dumb cover....of our student mascot & some other crap. I thought to myself that I didn't want to look at that all year & covered my book with magazine cut outs of my favorite bands and such. I got a lot of compliments on it, haha, and I think I still have it in one of my storage containers.
The years between high school and some college, a friend and I decided to make a fanzine or ZINE as it's usually called. Basically a very very very low-fi "magazine" that's cheaply made from xeroxed papers. I think her and I "made" that zine together for only a couple issues.....she kinda flaked on it, so I went on to do 7 more issues by myself. I really enjoyed making it-comprised of many collage styled pages to music reviews to random other stuff. I made some friends through that but soon realized that I couldn't keep making it (as I was putting in anywhere from 50 to 200 dollars per issue....kept getting bigger in size). Plus, zines weren't really being looked at as the World Wide Web was exploding by the end of the 90's. It was a great outlet for me to write and do collage but yeah, it ended because it had to.
So in community college and at a university I discovered ART HISTORY classes. I fell in love with them. I enjoyed learning about the old masters and their techniques....and just the progression of art. Very fascinating to me. I didn't really understand/appreciate the old masters up until that time (Ahh...it all looks the same I thought!) But wow, they DID have their own techniques, styles, and more.
Never took any drawing or painting etc... classes in college. Was definitely afraid to and I found myself really enjoying making art that was not influenced by anyone inparticular. I started painting exclusively and then before long, I brought the glue gun out and added random little things (mainly doll parts) to the paintings. I thought it really gave the piece some dimension and sometimes could say more than anything I'd paint on the canvas.
And fast forward 10+ years of making art to today. I'm glad to be creating art (in a style that I think is my own) and meeting cool artists and cool artsy people. I want to believe one day I could live off my art but who knows what will really happen. I just keep trying to get into shows....doing something NEW every now and then (out of my comfort zone)....and again meeting people and just spreading the word that ART LIVES!!! ^_^
Never give up on yourself.....never listen to what anyone says about your art-cuz if YOU like it, that's all that matters. Oh and never hold back, put 150% into your art at all times. Oh and support the arts....especially LOCALLY....that's where it all begins!