Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Painting for fun vs. "making art" — what's the difference?

How can it be "making art" when a whole class ends up painting the same picture? But then again, isn't that what I did in the 60s at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence, Italy? Then, each student was expected to render his/her interpretation of the live model—we were each painting the same subject but in our own individual way.
At the Paint Bar on Newbury Street, participants are guided step by step to paint the same subject — and they all paint it in the same way. Big difference from my days at the Academia.

But who cares if you're having fun and getting a little tipsy while doing it? And maybe the fun of doing it inspires someone to go on to paint "seriously." For a night out at The Paint Bar, there's no artist angst about what to paint. You sign up on line based on what scene you see on their calendar so you actually know what subject you'll be painting ahead of time! And this month is SOLD OUT!

As a long time struggling and often starving artist, this seems bizarre to me, but to all the participants at The Paint Bar tonight, it didn't matter one brush stroke worth, they were all having fun.

What do you think?