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Old 05-25-2018, 10:34 PM
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hmshood5 hmshood5 is offline
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Left art, then returned later... why?

Are you someone who started drawing or painting very young, and then felt like you had to leave it, but you came back later? What made you leave the first (or maybe even the second or third) time?

I loved to draw when I was 5 to about 10 years old. Up until then, it was just pics of whatever caught my attention: boats, trucks, planes, trains... all manned by stick figures! My sister was the "artist" in the family at the time. Well, one day when I was ten, I got ahold of one of her drawing books (one of those John Nagy ones), and drew a wonderful (for me, at least!) landscape, complete with a lake and cabin. I proudly showed it to my mother, who said; "You just traced this, didn't you?" THUD! My sister said that it was lousy, that I was a moron, and to never touch her stuff again. Another THUD! (Perhaps she felt a bit threatened?)
So, while I still drew, I kept it secret, and no one ever knew. When I was about twelve, I drew a nude woman from a classical painting in an encyclopedia, and it came out very nice (for me, at least), but I made a HUGE MISTAKE: I left it out where it could be found. Later that night, my mother showed it to everyone at the dinner table, announcing to everyone that I was a "pervert who liked to draw dirty pictures". And my sister again called me a moron and told me to give it up because I sucked.
And, so ended what could have been a great career as an artist.

I tried again in college, and my instructors told me that I had a bit of a talent for it, but I didn't like the still lifes we had to draw, and I was young and "knew everything" then, so none of it sank in. And so, I left art behind again... for almost twenty five years!

I have just returned to it, and feel like it was what was missing from my life for so long!

So, anyone else? What made you leave art, and then come back?
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Last edited by hmshood5 : 05-25-2018 at 10:36 PM.
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Old 05-25-2018, 11:35 PM
heatherita heatherita is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Good topic! I'm here again after several years. I grew up in a family of artists (mom was an art major, dad drew) and I loved art too but chose to study art history. I guess, as an art historian, I grew up thinking I was "left brained" and shouldn't bother making images (thank you betty edwards!). Lately I've been painting as an after work meditation. No judgement or aspirations. But if I like what I painted, it's enough to transform a bad day into a good day.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:30 PM
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heatherita
Good topic! I'm here again after several years. I grew up in a family of artists (mom was an art major, dad drew) and I loved art too but chose to study art history. I guess, as an art historian, I grew up thinking I was "left brained" and shouldn't bother making images (thank you betty edwards!). Lately I've been painting as an after work meditation. No judgement or aspirations. But if I like what I painted, it's enough to transform a bad day into a good day.
Yes, I find art to be therapeutic, and while it can cause stress at times, it is extremely rewarding!
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Old 05-26-2018, 10:26 PM
heatherita heatherita is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hmshood5
Yes, I find art to be therapeutic, and while it can cause stress at times, it is extremely rewarding!

Yes, I think you are always learning, especially during the stressful times. I'm a minimalist, and having too many things stresses me out, so I do watercolor. That way I minimize the amount of supplies and clutter. Everything is on paper. If I don't like a painting, I usually photograph it, then throw it away.

But now I want to delve into acrylics! How to keep it minimal? That is the challenge...
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Old 05-26-2018, 11:54 PM
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hmshood5 hmshood5 is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heatherita
Yes, I think you are always learning, especially during the stressful times. I'm a minimalist, and having too many things stresses me out, so I do watercolor. That way I minimize the amount of supplies and clutter. Everything is on paper. If I don't like a painting, I usually photograph it, then throw it away.

But now I want to delve into acrylics! How to keep it minimal? That is the challenge...
I paint all acrylics! But since I never really painted before (except for a college class in WC which I'd already mentioned), I really had not too much experience to go on. I have painted acrylics in model building, but those paints are mixed and go on totally differently from traditional "artist" acrylics.
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Old 05-27-2018, 12:45 AM
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

I have taken long breaks, the longest because of a catastrophic hand injury that took years and surgeries to overcome. During that time though, I still crocheted and knitted and did what I could with what I had.

I had major surgery on my hand and arm last year but was able to live vicariously through everyone here while I recovered.

I'm always painting or drawing in my mind though if that makes sense.
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Old 05-27-2018, 03:47 PM
C_Lynn C_Lynn is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Good topic, I swing in and out of art, I take short breaks and long (years) of breaks. My moment of THUD came through writing, I told my grandmother I was taking a writing class and she laughed and said, "What do you think you're going to write a book?" "Wait until I talked to your mother, we'll have a good laugh." I was an adult when that happened, it takes longer for a child to recover hurtful remarks. I didn't write for many years.
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Old 05-28-2018, 05:13 AM
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Julian Jaymes Julian Jaymes is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

They say that the creative adult is the child who survived. They also say we are all artists until someone tells us to put down the pencil.

I drew when I was very small, but when I realized that I had no inborn talent (about age 7 or so), I chose not to draw for a long time. I desperately wanted to draw and to be an artist, so I started trying to teach myself. But I was so self-conscious and embarrassed about “wasting my time” on something I had no talent for and that would never make me a living (as opposed to my language skills, which were more prevalent), I would draw in secret and hide my art.

I drew all through my teens and through a lot of laughs and taunts from family friends, which really stung. My parents stood by me wonderfully, which kept me going. But a lot of their friends and a lot of my friends were very much “be real, you can’t make a living in art, ever” and told me to quit messing around.

I stopped drawing when I was about 20 due to health issues, and when I went back to it at 25 or so, there were certainly some raised eyebrows - “You’re doing THAT again? I thought you were gonna be a social worker?” But, I’m happy to say, some people, even the most critical, have begun to come around.

There are still the scoffers but those are more the types who would taunt anyone who works in the arts. It's not about me, it's about their misplaced resentment towards art work. When they taunt me, I honestly just think “wow, what a sad small world they live in, that there is no space for artists.” It still stings sometimes, yeah, but I know they really have no valid point. Who knows, they may be artists who were told to put the pencil down.

I’m still working on these issues, of course. I only got an art website about a year ago. It has taken 15 years for me to even use paper other than printer paper, because honestly, up until last year, I thought my art was not worth the cents it might cost for a sheet of drawing paper. I still don’t sometimes. (Imagine my struggle with watercolor! The paper costs!!) And starting to post my art processes on YouTube was like WTFFFF AM I DOING. But some people really, really enjoy it, so I’ve continued.

The world is a bigger place than we realize, or at least than I ever realized, and there is more room, more support, and more need for artists than I realized, either. I hope for a day when more people, if not everyone, can realize that too.

~Julian
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Old 05-28-2018, 10:35 AM
marksmomagain marksmomagain is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

I pretty much left artwork for 20 or so years. Jobs, school, farm. Bounced in and out of it. Kept all my supplies in the cellar for a couple decades (so glad I didn't get rid of them). Came back to it a few years ago. Rollin' now...
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Old 06-04-2018, 05:43 PM
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PolishGuy PolishGuy is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Wow, I can relate to this topic. I’ve been a member of WC for a while now. Haven’t posted any art work and only one post but I do check in every so often. Today is one of those days. I like many of you, started drawing and exploring art as a child. I did a number of artistic paintings in junior and senior high school that were good enough to where I was dubbed the family artist. But, I never did any art work for sale. As others have said, the underlying sentiment that ‘one can not make a real living doing art so it’s not worth wasting your time’ was overtly and covertly expressed by my parents and some of my peers. After college I put all of my artistic endeavors on hold, playing guitar, oil and water color painting etc, and got a “real job” in the electronics industry. Don’t get me wrong, the pay was good along with the benefits. But, I had no real creative outlet. About ten years ago I was having some serious problems with depression. After a long time on medications, which I’m now off of, and attending support group meetings I’m just now getting back into creative activities. At one group meeting the doctor/co-ordinator asked me what I did for creative fun to which I replied that I used to play guitar and did some painting. When asked why I didn’t do it anymore my answer was that there wasn’t any money in it so why should I waste my time. I was then told that a creative outlet like painting or playing music was something that I, in particular, NEEDED to do. I started playing my guitar again and am now actually enjoying it as I’m now exploring music and styles that interest me. The painting side not so much yet. I’ve done some art work on glass and stemware for a few friends but not on canvas or other traditional mediums; maybe I’m still struggling with the subliminal message that painting on glassware isn’t really art but rather just “crafts” much like the jewelry/bead art that I do for my wife. It’s difficult but I’m
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Old 06-26-2018, 07:03 PM
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SowegaPainter SowegaPainter is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Great question, OP.
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Old 07-19-2018, 11:33 PM
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maryinasia maryinasia is online now
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

During a busy period when I thought it was art was too self-indulgent and didn't do much painting, I had a recurring dream of a room I wasn't using.

Now I realize painting can be a time of feeding my soul and talking to the Creator, esp. when painting while outside or while listening to the Bible or praise music. Sometimes the Creator calls me to paint and spend time with him.
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Old 07-23-2018, 11:02 PM
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hmshood5 hmshood5 is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julian Jaymes
They say that the creative adult is the child who survived. They also say we are all artists until someone tells us to put down the pencil.

I drew when I was very small, but when I realized that I had no inborn talent (about age 7 or so), I chose not to draw for a long time. I desperately wanted to draw and to be an artist, so I started trying to teach myself. But I was so self-conscious and embarrassed about “wasting my time” on something I had no talent for and that would never make me a living (as opposed to my language skills, which were more prevalent), I would draw in secret and hide my art.

I drew all through my teens and through a lot of laughs and taunts from family friends, which really stung. My parents stood by me wonderfully, which kept me going. But a lot of their friends and a lot of my friends were very much “be real, you can’t make a living in art, ever” and told me to quit messing around.

I stopped drawing when I was about 20 due to health issues, and when I went back to it at 25 or so, there were certainly some raised eyebrows - “You’re doing THAT again? I thought you were gonna be a social worker?” But, I’m happy to say, some people, even the most critical, have begun to come around.

There are still the scoffers but those are more the types who would taunt anyone who works in the arts. It's not about me, it's about their misplaced resentment towards art work. When they taunt me, I honestly just think “wow, what a sad small world they live in, that there is no space for artists.” It still stings sometimes, yeah, but I know they really have no valid point. Who knows, they may be artists who were told to put the pencil down.

I’m still working on these issues, of course. I only got an art website about a year ago. It has taken 15 years for me to even use paper other than printer paper, because honestly, up until last year, I thought my art was not worth the cents it might cost for a sheet of drawing paper. I still don’t sometimes. (Imagine my struggle with watercolor! The paper costs!!) And starting to post my art processes on YouTube was like WTFFFF AM I DOING. But some people really, really enjoy it, so I’ve continued.

The world is a bigger place than we realize, or at least than I ever realized, and there is more room, more support, and more need for artists than I realized, either. I hope for a day when more people, if not everyone, can realize that too.

~Julian

Like your "Railway Man" Julian! My "real" job is a locomotive engineer!
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Old 07-30-2018, 04:30 PM
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MegPaints MegPaints is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

Great question!

When I was young I thought of myself comfortably as an artist. I was always drawing and painting and I felt freedom and retreat from everything else when I was with my creativity.

So I went to art school. I wont' go into it so deep but I gained a whole lot but there was something that changed and twisted in my mind too. Around the concept of being an artist and that place I used to go to for solace was now a notion that my creativity needed to support me, to provide health insurance, benefits, and a retirement. I felt inspired early on in my college life but as time went on and the ever oppressive 'end' date to my education and 'career time' loomed, I became more and more overwhelmed. Art wasn't fun anymore.

With a decade of relationships, moving, and the birth of my daughter I found myself working in Insurance, telling interviewers that asked about my degree 'oh, well, I quickly found out art was no career' and I am providing a decent life for my family.. but something has been missing and it's absence has been growing and growing inside of me... so...

In the past year I have converted my garage into a home studio where I go, little by little, to spend time again with my paints, pencils, inks, and ideas to try to find that joy I had as a child. This time I won't be asking my creativity quite so forcefully to support me.
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Old 08-01-2018, 11:52 AM
Sarah Rose Sarah Rose is offline
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Re: Left art, then returned later... why?

I have always worked in creative jobs so I never really left art, but they were in sculpture and I really wanted to be a painter. I did sculpture as my job, actually made an ok living. It eventually felt like just a job, I got burned out, and wanted to paint. I painted for a few years and then ‘reality’ set in, I couldn’t make ‘grown up’ money painting so I set it aside and quite grumpily returned to sculpting. I have a neuromuscular disorder and am in a wheelchair, and it also effects my arms and hands. I finally gave up sculpting and will be applying for disability soon. That and some other things in my life have resulted in some free time, so I couldn’t see a reason not to return to painting. Right now while I still have some use of my arms and hands I am using pastels, but at some point I will switch to paint and use a brush in my mouth. I am not letting it go this time, art after all, is a way to make life more bearable. Those of us who are creative are so fortunate to have this, especially during tough times. It is my meditation, my religion, my best friend.
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