There’s a whole discussion in the art world about artists who are “self-taught” vs. “art school”. I’ve been spending a lot of time learning from professional artists and printmakers this year, but I’m not enrolled in any fine arts degree, nor am I taking my own instruction. A better term may be “Learning by engagement.
I’ve taken a number of virtual classes with various amazing artists, and was accepted to a mentorship program with Lynn Peterfreund through Zea Mays Printmaking Center. Along with technical skills development, I’ve gotten a lot of encouragement wrapped around tough love, driving me to reflect on composition, craft, and why I decided to add that red stripe, or outlined that flower.
The instruction and critiques have been every bit as serious as formal art school: Kind and gentle, yet constructive and a bit soul-baring. I love the “likes”, but grow from the “have you considered“ insights that lead to tweaks that make all the difference.
My teachers and mentors have helped me improve my observation skills, and guided me in creating a series about mangroves. I also completed #the100dayproject on Instagram which forced me to make at least one work a day. The discipline of this daily regimen served as an “idea factory” that feeds my on-going work