I realize that as long as I continue to be an artist, I'm always going to be a student of one thing or another. The need to stay current means I have the obligation to my art to be constantly aware of what's going on in the world around me. I say this because the world I live in now has advanced beyond anything I could have predicted. I’m floundering in technology that continues to change by the minute. I once thought I wasperfectly fine without getting involved in all the new cyberspace thinking. It was confusing, to say the least, and took up too much time. The hours I could have been painting were spent on the phone with computer techs who, thank goodness, were very patient with me. In those days, I thought it would have little impact on my art. How little did I know.
I can't believe now I was so resistant. The fact is, for every new advance that occurs, more people are being left behind. I don't want to be one of them. So many of my artist friends have resisted the computer technology and I think this is a big mistake.
This leads me to the reason why I mention this. If my work is to have meaning in the future, it has to be current with new developments today. To be an artist means to keep my mind open and embrace change, if for no other reason than for my art. It's in the tenacious conquering of obstacles that allows the unexpected to break through. I feel this is an exciting time for artists to develop. Anything goes these days and it's the artist's obligation to explore the possibilities.
Yes, I'm often frustrated as I plod through programs like Photo Shop and Illustrator, but I'm excited to find new ways of developing imagery. I feel like a student again absorbing all these new ideas that open up my thinking. I even find the art supply store an interesting place of discovery. Each time I go I'm faced with new kinds of products that get me thinking about new ways of approaching my work.
To be a student of art means there's still so much out there to discover and that after all these years is still what drives me.