Snobbery in Art & Among Artists
If you cant do
realism, you arent an artist.
Digital art isnt real art.
These are two statements which I will leave unattributed since
I dont want to wind up with nasty email from those
individuals whom Im quoting (
and they are direct
quotes) or from their fans and supporters. In fact, it
doesnt matter who said it, because you can read or hear
similar sentiments coming from various sources art experts,
art aficionados, art critics, art reviewers, gallery owners, art
agents, as well as from artists and the common populace.
What arrogance! What snobbery! What short-sighted,
closed-mindedness. Of course youre an artist, even if
you cant do realism. And, of course its
art, even if its created digitally. The statements
are so very ludicrous, I just have to chuckle. The same was
said by those condemning dadaism, impressionism, expressionism,
cubism and every other art style which arose. The same was
said concerning acrylic paintings as opposed to more traditional
And here Im going to quote myself from a forum I
frequent. This was in response to someones art posted
to critique, and the resulting conversation concerning learning
to draw and paint realistically as a valuable prerequisite (Its
valuable, but NOT prerequisite):
Now that brings up a funny for me from my
history. (It wasnt funny at the time, but is now.) You
know I got so good at realism in high school and at
university that I had to PROVE I didnt trace or
photograph the works. I was challenged so many times, it wasnt
funny. And proving you did it all by freehand was not easy at
that time. In high school, my parents would stand up and tell
the teachers, no, she did it. At university, I wound up only
working in class or when a roommate could verify that I did
it myself no photo, no tracing, no nothing. This was
before the advent of the video camera, so there was really no
way to prove that I had done it freehand. I was that good
with my realism. I dont have that kind of patience any
longer. And I dont see the point. If I want realism, Ill
take a photo. If I want hyper-realism, Ill start with a
set of photos, then project them onto the canvas, turn around
and enhance the realism
the same way that Steve Lyman
and many others do their realism. Is it cheating?
They dont think so. Personally, I love that I have the
ability to do it, and I can prove my ability to do it, but
why waste ones life when what I paint are my feelings.
Thats my art. Im not interested in painting
pretty pictures. I do enough illustrating to be completely
bored with it.
The point is, I guess, why is realism so necessary
when the style here is wonderful. This he should cultivate.
Being able to meticulously draw the human form, a tree, a
tiger, a horse from scratch with or without a picture to
reference develops good skills, but it can also detract from
originality, in my opinion, especially if the internal critic
gets a hold, enhanced by external reinforcement and the very
prevalent attitude that, unless you can do realism, youre
not an artist.
And as for digital art, well, it is just as valid as any other
media, often takes more skill because you must know the same
techniques and craft as any real world media painter or sculptor,
PLUS how to use a computer, the ancillary hardware (Wacom and
stylus, for example), as well as the programs required to create
the art, and, in many cases, you also have to know some high-end
math, especially in the case of 3D art.
Beware, you who claim realism as the utter measurement of
someones artistic qualification, and double beware you who
claim digital to be something less than a valid art form and
media. The ability to do realism does not mean the
individual has any artistic ability whatsoever. It only means
they have a specific technical proficiency. As to the media with
which the art is rendered, digital or real word, that has
absolutely no bearing upon the merit and value of a work as art.
Originally posted by DLKeur on her art blog on June 21, 2007.
Copyright 2007 D.L.Keur &/or F.W.Lineberry, http://www.zentao.com . All rights reserved. Reprint rights granted ONLY if linked and credited.