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Sunday, April 21, 2013

So, ya think you're an artist, do ya?

True Story: Soon after I finished art school, another illustrator said to me, in a not-so-friendly way, "So. Congratulations. You're an artist."

The half-concealed sarcasm meant that it's stupid to think that doing art school makes one an artist (and perhaps he felt I was too dumb to figure that out for myself).

Despite the tone, the comment raised a good question that makes me wonder now then: When IS a person an artist? When they make a living off their art? When they sell their work? When someone else calls them "artist"?

Maybe it's when they:
a) just keep making art and
b) give no thought to labeling one way or another.


ZooMan55 said...

So I have to weigh in here. I believe a person is an artist when "they" feel they have made art. Whether anyone ever appreciates it, comments on it, or buys it does not transform it into a piece of art. And if what you have made is art, then you are an artist. How's that for lowering the bar???

Still love your stuff.

Rosa said...

I think you're an artist when you can't not make art or when you'd rather make art than do anything else--or when making art has saved your life at least once.

Karen Blados said...

I agree with Rosa. I think artists have a need to create - doesn't matter if the creation is seen by anyone else or ever recognized as art.

Geoffrey A. Landis said...

An artist is somebody who makes art!