Popular Section: Expand Creativity

How Many Hats?

how many hatsThe word “artist” is disarmingly deceptive as a singular noun. It gives the appearance of one thing, like “chair.” Or elephant. Or electrician.

And because we humans are hard wired to use language as our core form of communication, words have a pervasive psychological power on us consciously, subconsciously, and unconsciously.

Without being aware, we sleepwalk into language traps all the time.

Since the word “artist” is singular, we feel as if the artist must also be singular. A painter. A sculptor. A jeweler. Singular, in the same way an electrician sticks to working with electricity.

This sense that, as an artist, you are one thing morphs into another sense, that you should, by all rights, only be doing one thing (like an electrician).

Then, when the reality of “doing,” as an artist, flies in the face of this singular feeling (all I should be doing is making art), a sort of righteous indignation – or resentment – creeps in.

And so begins….

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Brave New Art World: Part 2

For a community whose currency is imagination, I was surprised I didn’t get a bit more sci fi in the comments last week.

Personally, I can’t imagine anything more exciting than peeking into the future of technology and the visual fine arts. When you look at what’s happened so far, it seems as if the next generation of adventurers and explorers will only be limited by whatever keeps them from expanding the boundaries of imagination.

The other surprise I had last week was when I dropped a big hint that no one took me up on.

From Brave New Art World: Part 1:

I watch iTunes and Pandora bring music to the masses and long for a **visual art venue that would do the same.

I confess to a wee bit of shenanigans here, because… 

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Confidence In Your Artistic Fingerprint (Part 3 of 5)

Some people also refer to this as your artist’s voice, much like every singer has a distinct tone that cannot be duplicated, or a signature style that’s immediately recognizable (think Georgia O’Keefe or Frida Kahlo).

It is what sets you apart from the pack of ordinary work, where a dozen pair portraits from a dozen different artists could be lined up next to each other and all look as if they came from the same artist.

When your work is speaking from the level of your soul, no one can ever successfully copy you. Your artistic fingerprint is just that: yours. By definition it cannot be anyone else’s.

Only a lot of artists feel confused by the difference between loving what they have just made, and knowing the work carries a distinct sense of who they are as an artist.

An artistic fingerprint can be simple or complex, but it is never about self-duplication.

It’s something you do…

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Confidence In Your Relationship To Your Art (Part 2 of 5)

Welcome to the phantasmagorical world of Geoffrey Gorman_American Style Mag

Geoffrey Gorman, artist and partner in our Art Career Mentor Program, made a very provocative statement during one of our sessions. He said that “curiosity is the most important trait an artist can have.”

Arguably, he was referring to the making of art where an artist lubricates all parts of the process by staying open and curious about materials, about subject matter, and the message.

But I think there’s another dimension where curiosity will separate out the short pants from the long pants (now why isn’t there…

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