Well? Is It ART? (Part 2)

I find it amazing that just checking your Facebook page will take you off on a totally unplanned journey. So, two hours later...

Anyway...I clicked a link that seemed to have a positive message for artists - as the poster stated: "a nice summary of the personality traits of as artist: http://clicks.robertgenn.com/school-life.php ", so I went for a visit. There was some interesting reading, especially the comments. And then, I found the following:
"As an artist who is struggling to make it as a professional, and with many years of toil and learning behind me, I am often frustrated by the sheer numbers of “artists” out there who are simply people who decided to pick up a brush and, because they managed to paint a tree that looks like a tree, they figure they’re ready to break into the commercial market. Local art fairs are overflowing with such individuals and often, I think, the public is overwhelmed by sheer numbers; the market becomes over-saturated with art of “questionable” standards and it boggles the mind of the average Joe. Unlike any other profession, to be an artist there is no real accreditation process, no scoring system, and no firm standards (unlike golf where you might have the most beautiful swing in the world, but the bottom line is your score). Virtually anybody can claim to be an artist. What does that do for those of us who are truly committed to this vocation? Well I guess it means we just have to buckle down and make sure we get really good at it, that our work shines, and that we’re in it for the long haul, and I guess that’s what we should be doing anyway. It’s not a vocation for the dabbler, the hobbyist or the weekend warrior, it’s for those who can’t imagine doing anything else and are willing to do what it takes."

Now, I know the writer did not specifically target digital art, but what is the difference between "an artist struggling to become a professional" and “artists” out there who are simply people who decided to pick up a brush"? Who decides this? Where are the guidelines? Where are the rules? Where are the judges?

"Virtually anybody can claim to be an artist."  That's true. I claim that distinction. Who says I'm not? Oh, yeah? Prove it!  


Is it "ART"?

One of my favorite quotes, discovered while I was trying (at the age of 50) to learn to be a Graphic Designer, sums up my art experiences so well! It goes like this:

"And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart, till the Devil whispered behind the leaves "It's pretty, but is it Art?" - Rudyard Kipling

Well, in spite of that rude whisper, I survived school, got my degree, and have worked steadily ever since. Then, entirely by accident, I discovered Digital Art. The first picture was of my grandson, exposure was poor, his shirt was dirty, but it was a cute photo.

So, I started trying to clean it up in Photoshop, playing with filters and layers, and eventually wound up with this...

And I was hooked!!! If you look at my portfolio or check out my Facebook Fan Page, you'll see I have done digital paintings that range from portraits to boats to lighthouses - and just about everything in between! I love the challenge of taking a photo to another level, finding something extra in it. I make no claim to being a photographer, but my camera helps me capture what my mind sees, at least in the beginning. A beautiful rose will sometimes just be adequate as a photo, but by using my imagination and my creative tools (which just happen to be a computer, tablet and pen) it can be transformed into an image that will take your breathe away.
So, what do you think? Is it ART?