Art takes courage!
Courage to create without restraint.
Courage to try something new you never dreamed you could do.
Courage to push away from a project until more inspiration graces.
Courage to return to a project and produce imperfection.
Courage to share your imperfection with the world.
Without courage, art hides in the shadows frightened to come forth. Yet with courage, the impossible becomes probable. And what you create, even if modest at best, ends up amazing you.
“I don’t know where all of this is coming from!” A teacher tried to explain to me at a recent art training a colleague and I presented. Her eyes danced with delight as she took me on a journey through her desert landscape. She told me about the painting’s evolution, and why she decided to use a color palate previously unappealing to her. As she talked, I found myself admiring her courage and drawing strength to push through with my own projects.
Whenever I present art trainings to educators, I always ask, “Who loves art?”
All hands shoot up. Then I ask, “Who is an artist?” Arms slowly drop, except for a few brave souls in the room. I go on to explain that you don’t have to be an artist to create possibilities for your students to discover their artistic talents. In fact, before middle school age, children aren’t afraid of failing or appearing less than if they try art.
Unfortunately, by the time students reach those vulnerable middle school years, they are so afraid of what others will think that it takes an encouraging teacher to create a safe environment for art exploration.
So at my art trainings, I share some of my former students’ art and art from classrooms where I’ve taught art. It’s fun to watch courage grow in the faces of teachers as they start to believe they can.
Yes, art takes courage!
But I couldn’t imagine living any other way!