Friday, October 18, 2013

Good Fridays: Artist Appreciation

We all know about art appreciation. Most people agree that it's a good thing in schools, libraries, and homes. But what about artist appreciation? Often artists are underpaid and undervalued for their skills, so recognition for the things they do and the effort they put in is important. I tasted a little of that this past week and I'm still floating.

I teach a short art class to older kids (ages 11-16) on Thursdays at the library where I work, and I love it. I love when I have new kids, I love when kids show me things they've done on their own, and I love when they thank me for providing the class for them. I have the most grateful bunch, always willing to help clean up, always trying even if they've never attempted the medium or subject before.

This past week I had a mom of two of my kids come to me and tell me how she appreciated what I do. She said people have been seeing the work her kids bring home and asking about it, how they did it, what they used and who's teaching them. The kids have fun trying media they've never used before and they love coming to the class. I've noticed it too. Even new to the class, they're enthusiastic, eager, and absorbed. If she hadn't come and thanked me, I would've gotten satisfaction just from seeing them at work, but hearing it made my day brighter.

Though artists are taught to be thick-skinned dealing with crit, and patient working toward success, we get discouraged just like anyone else. We like to be praised for a job well done. Sometimes that encouragement is all it takes to keep a discouraged artist from laying down her pencil.

So, the next time you compliment an artist friend or even someone whose work you've admired from afar - especially if you show off their work online or to someone else - it means a lot to them.

And from me to you, I thank everyone who's complimented my work and I appreciate everyone who reads this blog. I know all of you are artist appreciators. ^_^

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that is wonderful! It really is true--one sincere compliment can go SO far. That said, keeping art in the lives of young people is tremendously important--keep being awesome. :)


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