Letters to a Young Artist Class Discussion

After returning from our field trip and editing five of our best photos, my whole photography class watched a Ted Talk (I love Ted Talks!) titled “Be an artist, right now!” In the video, writer Young-ha Kim talked about how children are too often discouraged from thinking too creatively and lying (in the creative sense). In conjunction with reading some of “Letters to a Young Artist”, this made for a great start to a class discussion we formed a some sort of bumpy ellipse shape (it was supposed to be a circle. We have been proven ourselves incapable of such things) and had a casual discussion on our personal struggles as artists. It was very encouraging to hear others that are in the same stage of life as myself talking about their fears and various obstacles in the art world. I could relate to most of, if not all, that was brought up in our discussion. We all feel pressure from those around us, we all compare ourselves to other artists, we all overthink, are our own worst critics, and I’m probably not the only one that overthinks the heck out of everything. Also, I loved that many of us had the courage to even speak up to strangers about our fears! 🙂

With my own art, I am simply motivated by the fact that I can bring joy to other people through my art. One of my artistic goals is to simply make other people happy and enhance their lives in a little way. My other goal as an artist is to encourage discourse between people that pushes them to levels of understanding. In talking about our struggles, we are able to see that as human beings, we go through similar thought-processes and similar trials. Instead of distancing ourselves from each other, we should see that we can offer others encouragement, advice, and overall be more empathetic. People are so interesting in all their, struggles, complexities, and idiosyncrasies.

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