Past Posts

January 2010
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What good are Art Schools?

Having studied a few years of Architectural Engineering way back when, I always, in the back of my mind, wondered what I missed by not studying at an art  achool. After all, I have ended up with a career in “Fine Arts.”  Well, I think I got the answer this week. And the answer is Nothing. In fact, my lack of a formal “Art” education is probably a big plus.

In the last post there is an video clip of Theresa at one of our workshops. She tells a story about art school, professors and their influence. Nothing new to me, she told it to me long ago. But since she told it at the workshops and I posted the video, we have been getting similar stories from others. Stories from long ago and stories that happened recently.Nothing seems to have changed.

Of course, the fact that Art Schools don’t teach you how to market, sell or have a career after you leave school is the basis for ACE. Now if you watched the clip or attended our workshops, you know that Theresa is now a portrait artist. As in portrait painter, she paints portraits. This is also something that she didn’t learn at art school. At the workshops, the consensus from art school alumni seems to be that nobody was taught the techniques and craft of art. Isn’t that what you went to art school for? To learn?

So if you weren’t taught how to do it, I guess it would be hard to teach you how to sell it! So my question is, “What do they teach at Art School?”

I talked with one of the workshop attendees recently and his story was about a Studio Art class. The major requirement for this class was that a the beginning of the term you bury 5 objects somewhere on the campus.  At the end of the term, you dig them up and write about them. My response was “Huh?”  He decided to drop the Art and major in Physics. And know he wants to resume his art career at some level. I think it will be much easier for him than if he had gone the “fine art” route

So I look back and value what I learned in Arch. Eng. My Archtectural Drafting class taught me more about perspective than you would want to know. The concept of vectors has been a great tool to teach drawing to adults. And most of all I have learned that creativity is not just a possession of artists, writers, musicians and other “creative types.”  That will be the topic of another post. Or maybe a book.

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