People who know me well know that I am an avid knitter and that I love the textile or fiber arts. I am not as much of a designer as I am someone who follows directions well. I was thinking about what it means to be an artist. I have never considered myself one, although I’m warming up to the idea of being a textile artist.
Students that I’ve worked with over the years also hesitate to call themselves artists or artistic. Many shy away from that title even when the rest of us see what they produce and proclaim artistry! Yesterday I was in an elementary school and met this incredible second grader who was drawing important events from a story they were reading in class. It was masterful! I bent down beside him as he worked and couldn’t help but comment on his artistry.
“I’m not an artist,” he said flatly. “My mom is though. She taught me how to draw.” I told him to never stop drawing – ever.
This child in my opinion is an artist. Does he have to be full grown to be considered as one? How do we define “artistic”? For that matter, how do we define “creativity”? I can tell you that they are not one and the same.
Here’s what the dictionary has to say about “artist.”
You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.Maya Angelou