Do You Need Formal Art Education To Succeed In Art?

Can’t you be naturally gifted and become famous even though you don’t have an art “degree”?

Formal art education is very helpful in art. It isn’t exactly necessary, but it is an incredible time saver, because it tells you what your options are and helps you to make intelligent choices regarding those options. Without this, you can flounder around literally for years trying this and that to attempt to create the vision in your head and heart and just end up getting frustrated. So that’s the reason for education. It’s not that it’s some big art world conspiracy. It’s just how you acquire the tools of the trade.

And “gifted” doesn’t mean very much at all. I mean it’s nice if you have an ability to draw. That puts you a bit ahead. But there are tons of gifted people who go absolutely nowhere. It takes years and years and years of daily hard work to get your craft at a decent level and that’s not even remotely the hard part.

The hard part is developing a mature style that is uniquely yours within which you can grow that will hold somewhere between 150-300 original artworks a year. That is one of the most difficult tasks an artist has – and many never accomplish it.

They end up tweaking another artist’s work. The ability to create a style derives from creative imagination, enormous amounts of practice and a mature soul – from knowing oneself and knowing ones craft.

However, I assume this is just an intellectual question for you, since I googled you under “images” and found none. Because that’s the other major requirement for all artists – courage. They not only make work – constantly, every day. They put it out there – everywhere. For people to see – to enjoy, or to throw rocks at, or whatever they’re going to do. Artists are both sensitive and super-tough and very determined. All these other qualities are nice, but way less important.

Source : Michelle Gaugy

11 thoughts on “Do You Need Formal Art Education To Succeed In Art?

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  5. I absolutely agree with that first line. I recently met a CKP professor who mentioned that children have no bias, they create freely, uninhibited. So, not knowing about the great masters, styles, art movements, techniques, mediums may also lead to spontaneity.
    I also kinda like what Ernest Hemingway’s poet friend Evan Shipman said a long time ago. Shipman truly did not care if his poems were ever published.
    “We need more true mystery in our lives, Hem,” he once told Hemingway. “The completely unambitious writer and the really good unpublished poem are the things we lack most at this time. There is, of course, the problem of sustenance.”

    It sounds so true even hundred years later–now in our time when we are living almost naked lives, over sharing if anything. The only difference, between then and now, is not that of the problem of sustenance but of vanity.

  6. Art is very easy when u don’t know what art is and if you know what’s art then it’s very difficult to create it. That’s what I read somewhere and it has proved very right in my experiments with art. It requires a lot of knowledge to create art and I am sure there are many artists who have acquired their knowledge through observing others and practicing hard.

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