Art School

Joining Art School

In the past, applying to an art school was frowned upon. Parents didn't like the idea of painting and sculpting in university, and certainly didn't think that anything of that sort would lead to a career. Art school was for the eccentric and super-rich - children of the working class were going to university to become doctors or lawyers; to get a profession they 'could be proud of'. Thank god things have changed!

Although it can still be a bit of a fight with your parents to enroll in art school ("Why don't you take some business courses as well, just in case?") it isn't downright impossible. True, you will likely be goaded into taking another course program alongside your art, but at least you've been allowed to go. Now it's time to get messy and really start having fun with your education!

Understanding Art School

What a lot of people don't understand about art school is that besides being trained in the use of paints, paper, metals, wood and clay, a student will be given art history lessons. These can be as enjoyable as actually creating the art, and will give students' work another dimension and historical context that will likely be lacking in work produced by an amateur. The history of art is a fascinating subject that leads to psychology, sociology, politics and even evolution and biological history. Art school students are shown how artwork is created to convey a message, and they will endeavor to do the same with their own pieces.

Art school is a haven for creative and unique people, and a good school will give you a lot of choice when it comes to specializations. Some students will prefer to learn about painting in particular, or pottery or maybe wood construction. All these options should be available to students and at the end of the three or four year program, hopefully a student will have excelled in one or two specific areas. They can go on to use this specific knowledge after art school, and apply it in their own work.

For students who struggle to find work producing art after graduation, there is still hope (even if they haven't enrolled in a parallel business course). The history lessons open the door to teaching, researching and writing on many subjects within an 'art' genre, and this should always be remembered. Many fine professors and writers have come from art school without having sold a single painting, so don't despair. There are many ways in which you can apply your knowledge, and creating actual works of art is only one of them. Art students spend several years of their lives being allowed to be creative, and they shouldn't let the anxiety of 'real life' change that tendency. Art school is worth the money - tell your parents!

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