An Amateur Artists' Ramblings

I'm going to call myself an artist, at least for the duration of this post. As an artist and an art lover I attend art shows and exhibitions regularly. So at a recent art and crafts show that I attended, there was a voting system to select winners in 4 categories: photography, painting, sketching, and handicrafts. Though all the artists who have exhibited were equally talented there could only be one winner in each category. So I was wondering, what  is the basis of judging someone or voting for someone in these shows? I asked a person who has no idea about art or what goes into creating it and he said that he would see what looks good to him and something that catches his eye. And most of the voters were either such clueless people or people who had little to no idea about art. This really seemed stupid because art should not be judged by what looks attractive immediately but based on the creativity, technique, and effort that went into it. Technique and effort are something based on a lot of things like having the time to spend on it, having the money to learn from a professional, and having a lot of interest and patience. Again, not every artist can afford to spend on professional training and nobody in the IT industry really has the time to spend on it with the exception of a few people. And anybody who's really interested in art will definitely put some amount of hard work in it provided they have time. To sum it up, I choose to believe that out of "creativity", "technique" and "effort", creativity is the only true thing.

Creativity is not something that can be learnt and no amount of effort or technique can make a person creative really. That is something a person either has or not. So shouldn't that be something that should be rewarded? I mean, if a person is creative and interested in art, he / she will definitely try to learn the technique and spend some time and effort on it. And that is what's worth rewarding and voting for.

As an art lover I couldn't digest the fact that a copied piece of exhibit from an art class, and paintings created with help from professionals have been praised more. Art should just come out of a person and not learned in an art class. Art should not be a copy of someone else's creation and should mean something to the creator. It should talk to you and touch you in a way that nothing else can. I'm not saying that the people who were praised lack talent or skill, they have definitely spent time and effort in creating something beautiful but if ultimately that is enough Van Gogh's paintings wouldn't be so valued and precious. His paintings were either his own imagination or a creative way of presenting something he saw around. And he definitely didn't learn his technique from any professional.

This is one reason why I don't like an audience voting system. You never know what kind of people judge your art and based on what kind of logic they vote on your work. Honestly, true talent never really gets recognized or appreciated the way it should be.

So how would you judge a piece of art or craft work? Let me know in the comments below, I really want to know your opinion.

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