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This is My Trade

This is My Trade
February 28
01:50 2020

I am an artist, which is something I’m sure I have in common with much of my audience.  And while the blessings and rewards outweigh any other feelings, there are also some things that are a great source of ire for me.  Probably the most exasperating of these is the misguided belief that art isn’t a trade worth pursuing. We have all had those conversations.  Someone asks you what you do for work, you state that you’re artsy. You then spend the next ten minutes validating your craft and attempt to explain the legitimacy of your work.

This is a point of frustration that is very real for many artists.  The constant fight to be seen, and to be validated as a professional in a world that struggles to see art as a legitimate trade.   This is something that is not a ‘hobby’ for many of us, it is a way of life, a way to make a living, and a way to make a name for ourselves.   We work with a plethora of artists and creative types, and the takeaway is often the same. They toil day in and day out, working constantly to create products that are both desirable and marketable.  Some find a firm foothold easier than others, yet the build up is the same. Long hours, hard work, and dedicating massive amounts of time and money to their craft. 

We can definitely point fingers at many aspects that affect the arts as a whole.  School systems are forced to cut art due to funding, which of course gives the message that the arts lack the importance to be kept around.   A culture that has strict definitions of what an acceptable trade is, and sets art on the back burner. The misguided idea that an artist is practicing a ‘hobby’, rather than cultivating a trade.  Even the age-old trope that ‘art doesn’t put food on the table’, can be linked to creative minds tossing this dream out the window.  

The question is, how do we rectify this mindset?  How do we teach our culture to appreciate artists in the same way that we appreciate any other craftsman?   We can show people the value of acquiring art for themselves. We can help people see the value of beautification within their own homes, as well as their city.  We can teach the public about the importance of self-expression and the creative process, and how this enhances the environment around us.  

Without art, whether its performance, visual or creative arts, we would have a bland and empty world.  Art gives us permission to feel without borders. It gives us the means to express ourselves in a way that goes deeper than words.  It allows us to relate to each other in a way that is both visceral and real. By teaching people that art matters, we convey the message that artists are valued.  That what they do is not a frivolous waste of time, but a worthwhile endeavor to bring beauty and expression to our world.

By Morgan the Artsy Dweeb

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Kurt S

Kurt S

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