Someone said “You should be thankful to have all that fancy tech to make your art! Not all artists have that! Some only have a pencil and paper.” Artists create in various ways, whether it’s some paints on canvas or a graphics tablet for computer art, maybe coffee splatter on a wall (to each their own, right?) So this time I want to talk about the clash of skill and technology.
Pencil & Paper
Everyone starts out with a pencil and a piece of paper (math class notes, newspaper, toilet paper..). It is later on that people realize if they want to dive deeper and spend on a fancier pencil, nicer paper (high quality toilet paper, for example). Maybe first watercolors. Then perhaps oil paints. Better coffee for richer splatter (?).
Saying that I should be thankful I have my tools made me think – well yes I should thank someone! Thanks, me! Thing is, I have saved up and bought all of my “fancy” artist stuff myself. No one is going to hand you brand markers or a drawing tablet. Thing is, there is no use for all this stuff if you have no skill. I would not have invested in any of it if I didn’t know I was going to learn and perfect it.
Pricey tools means you’re a good artist!
No. That comment I received made me think about the perception of how young artists might look at the concept of “if you have good tools you’ll make good art.” That is absolutely false advertising, captain. And not even a $900 Wacom Cintiq tablet is gonna make you good at drawing (at one point I almost considered getting it, I thought it’d help me be better). Nor are those French boutique oil paints gonna help. The quality of your art is based on your knowledge of art, its history and the practiced drawing skills.
First it really is the pencil and the paper. It was for me and it was for any successful artist, painter or designer.
Excerpt from my advertising book:
Technology is an enabler, it makes stuff possible faster. That’s all. Technology facilitates, it doesn’t replace the human imagination.
– Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi
So, the next time someone says you should be lucky to have nice tools, I will tell them you should feel lucky to be alive cause if I could I’d suckerpunch the tool out of you. Okay I kid, I kid.. I don’t believe in violence. I believe in being violently nice, so I’d likely just thank them for the input and guide them to enlightenment, cause peace, love, unity?