If you hear a voice inside you saying “you can’t paint”, then definitely paint, and that voice will be silenced. -Vincent Van Gogh
Most of us enjoy looking at art, but often we don’t create art on our own because we think we’d be terrible artists without ever trying. This often leads us to believe that we are not creative, leaving all artistic potential untapped.
Here are ten ways to start loving making art.
What is art?
When most people think of art, they think of painting or drawing, but the concept of art is human creativity: the ability to take something and make it beautiful.
Art has fueled cultures, revolutions and even wars. In short, art is a very powerful thread in the fabric of our world that everyone can add to.
Visit an art gallery
One of the best ways to learn how to be an artist is to see the work of others.
Spend time at your local art gallery. Take your time to look around you. Notice how each artist has put together their piece. Pay attention to the colors and techniques used. Think about how you can incorporate them into your own work.
Don’t talk to yourself
Never tell yourself “I suck at art” or “nothing I do looks good”. The more you say things like that, the more likely you are to believe them. Instead, say “I haven’t learned to do this yet” and “I’m still learning, it’s okay not to be perfect.”
Turning negative thoughts into positive thoughts allows you to grow as an artist, instead of hindering your creativity.
Learn one technique at a time
Instead of trying to learn everything at once, try to learn one thing at a time. This will help you feel less overwhelmed as you branch out. Once you’ve mastered one technique, start learning the next.
Many hobby departments, galleries, and art stores offer classes for beginning artists. Do some research to find classes in your area. You can also find tutorials on YouTube if you prefer to learn at your own pace.
Try different mediums
Try different types of art until you find one you like. It could be painting, drawing, mixed media, graphic design and pottery to name a few.
Don’t be discouraged if you haven’t discovered where your artistry lies. Not everyone is supposed to be the same kind of artist. Some people make better sculptors or fashion designers than they would sketch artists or photographers. It’s a matter of finding where you fit in the art world.
Listen to music while you work
Music helps stimulate the brain, which in turn helps you be more creative.
The next time you decide to work on a project, put on your favorite music and work to the beat. Don’t worry about being wrong or looking ridiculous. It’s about getting in the zone, not seeing what you look like doing it.
It is impossible to become an expert artist overnight. Often it takes years of learning to master any art form.
Practice as much as possible with your chosen medium. You don’t have to train every day, but you should aim to train a few times a week for at least 20-30 minutes.
After each art session, congratulate yourself. You just made art.
When you’re more comfortable with your artistic abilities, you can even start sharing your work with family and friends and asking for feedback.
Look for inspiration
When he talks about his creative process, the artist often has an influence that pushes him to create.
When you start your artistic journey, you have to find what inspires you to be creative. You can take inspiration from almost anywhere, whether it’s a person, a place, a song, a memory or something else.
Your inspiration will not always be the same. Sometimes you will have multiple sources at once.
If you’re not sure what inspires you, think about what you like or what you hate. Use it to fuel your creativity.
Don’t worry about being perfect
It’s easy to see someone else’s work and think they’re a perfect artist. That couldn’t be further from the truth.
Nobody is perfect. In fact, finding perfection in oneself or in others is impossible. Every artist, beginner or professional makes mistakes.
For every piece of art shown online or in a gallery, there are usually a dozen more that the artist didn’t show because they thought they were terrible.
When you set out to create art, just focus on having fun, rather than making it good enough. When you’re done, if you hate it, start over or try something else. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, as this is part of the learning process.
Find your creative tribe
No man is an island, nor should artists travel alone. Find people in your area who are also starting their creative journey. Make it a point to meet and share your work and your triumphs and struggles.
Don’t compare yourself to others
It’s so easy to fall into the trap of comparing yourself and your work to someone else. But your artistic journey will never be the same as anyone else’s. Your uniqueness is your most valuable asset as a creative. By comparing yourself to other artists, you are only hurting yourself.
Remember that you are just as much an artist as they are.
Art is the foundation of all culture. Without it, the world as we know it would not exist. Everyone has something they can contribute to art and culture. It’s just a matter of realizing your potential.