| 10 February, 2012 10:54
I am often asked, "How did you know that you wanted to be an artist?" My mom always says that she knew when I was two years old and painted a "mural" with fingerpaints on her newly painted wall! And she tells of when my kindergarten teacher told her that she must frame my tempera paint work of art. When I was ten, my parents bought a huge amount of gently used art supplies from an artist who was moving. I thought each day was Christmas from then on! Every school project where I could figure out a way to draw it or paint it, I would turn into a work of art. My physics and biology teachers finally suggested that maybe I should be a medical illustrator. With that in mind, at first I double majored in art and biology in college. But the Fine Arts degree called my name! I soaked in the creativity, took every fine arts studio class and relished art history. To share this passion, I added art education classes so I could teach art. I had found my joyful calling in life as an artist!
With the personal experience of being "born to create", I have observed similar traits in children who are "born this way". A child who looks out the window in a classroom so he can study the way the sun and shadows shape the world, might be drawn toward art. If a child notices funny lines in a cracked sidewalk and wants to draw them later, she may be intuitive to the fundamentals of art. I watched my young nephew carry around his tiny sketchbook during family gatherings so he could draw what was going on. When the desire to create is there, a child will find a way to do it, even if it's origami paper folding with a napkin from McDonalds! I truly believe that artists are born with a different way of seeing the world. To encourage this in a child is to open up the world for him.
So, if you doodle on paper all the time or have a child who would rather do a "project" than write a paper, you could be seeing potential creativity bottled up inside just waiting to come out. Let it flow! If you find great joy in creating, then you could be an artist, too!