Every artist was first an amateur. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Oh, how true !!! But to be a true artist I think you have to constantly learn and grow your talents and let yourself be an amateur over and over again. There is trial and error (...and error and error and error, in my case!) But as you tackle new things you learn your strengths and weaknesses, and where your passion lies. For me, once I feel I've conquered a technique, I want to improve upon it, and tweak it, and make it better, or move on to something else than can enhance the work I'm doing.
Last week my sister and I had the wonderful opportunity to sit 2 on 1 with one of my very favorite potters. Her passion and humor and excitement for what she was teaching me was SO contagious! Susan Burge is QUITE a talented lady. She taught me about slip and underglazes, of which I formerly knew naught!!! We sat for several hours, laughing, playing in clay, (taking notes) and soaking in new info, at her wonderfully rustic shop and studio, Elements Clay Studio and Stuff, in Lawrenceburg, Ky.
My previous teacher, the wonderfully talented Mary Ann Carroll taught this amateur the basics, for which I will be eternally grateful!! Once conquered, I've hungered to learn more techniques, and expand and improve and grow. I was starting to feel like my beads were getting to be "one note". I cannot WAIT to try out the wonderful new things I've learned. Susan's enthusiasm was incredibly infectious! I'm quite sure I've come down with Clay Fever!!!! If only there were more hours in the day........ sigh.... (Now if I could just go pick Marsha Neal's brain for a day or three!!! :o))
What new things are you trying? Are you stepping out and finding ways to learn and grow in your art?