Michelle Baker, MA
3 Myths about painting that keep you from your creativity.
#1 It’s easy for them (and hard for me)
The assumption that painting is easy for some and hard for others can keep you from pursuing an interest in art. We have this belief (maybe from watching Bob Ross) that some people can paint effortlessly and this translates to “if it’s hard for me, I must not be meant to do it.” As if there are some chosen few people who are meant to be artists.
Truth: Painting is challenging! Painters don’t love painting because it’s easy. Seriously. They love the challenge. Each piece offers a unique set of obstacles to overcome and it can be hard but it’s worth it when you succeed.
#2 Some people just have natural talent (and not me)
This myth also leads people to believe “painting must not be for me”. Imagine if we told all 15 year olds, “if you can’t drive well the first time, you’re lacking natural talent and shouldn’t ever drive!”
Truth: People who are inclined towards art take classes and practice. That’s where the talent comes from. Just like any other skill, you get good at it when you do it.
#3 The “a” word (I’m not an artist”)
This myth will be true as long as you think it. I started painting when I was 10 or 11 and even in my 20’s didn’t consider myself and “artist”. Why? Because I had an idea about what that meant and I didn’t fit into that category. What does artist mean? Someone who makes art. That’s it. What kind of art, how often, the quality or quantity has not impact on this term…unless you want it to.
Truth: You can be an artist. You can paint and you will get good at it if you learn some skills and practice. It’s not always easy (for anyone) but it’s worth the challenge. One of the best things about being human is creating.
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