One of the reasons I love to teach art to kids is because they are still so secure in their artistic voices. If you ask a six-year-old what his favorite color is, you can bet he’ll know the answer. Children still feel safe drawing anything that enters their imagination because they haven’t yet learned to be self-conscious, or decided that because their picture doesn’t look the same as their peers’, it must be wrong. We grown-ups could learn a thing or two from our little ones about enjoying the freedom to create, and that’s what the heart of this site is about.
To me, great art is the stuff that makes you feel strongly, that helps you make a connection to another human being’s experience, history, or emotion. And it requires neither an arts degree nor a specialized vocabulary to be creative. If you can name a person or place you find beautiful, if you can identify a memory that carries strong emotion, if you find yourself drawn to a certain color or scent or texture, then you have what it takes to be an artist. The ingredient that’s missing for most adults is not creativity, it’s courage. I speak from experience: it is easier not to create than it is to risk that my creations will declare my imperfections to the world. But my own life is also proof that the easiest path is seldom the most fulfilling, and often the greatest opportunities for growth come at times when we are most vulnerable.
If you need someone to encourage you to make things (or just give you permission to make mistakes), then consider it done. I would love to hear about and see what you made today, and I am already proud of you for trying. I guarantee that everything I make will be imperfect, but that the artwork I share is created for joy. (I learn more every day about how important accepting the first is in achieving the latter.)
Click on the gallery below to visit the Make archives and view posts, pics, and descriptions: