Art School or College?

Do I want to make a career in art?

This is a great time of year to ponder this question, if you are a young artist dreaming of a career in visual art.   School’s out or nearly out, and you probably have some time to enjoy making your work. But, you may not be able to relax completely until you quell some of the anxiety about what next year will bring. Parents, teachers and friends have probably hinted or asked you, “What do you see yourself doing in the future”?  If you are of high school age or a recent grad looking for direction, sit yourself down and honestly ask yourself these three hard questions:

Do I need to make art?

Is making art at the top of my list, when I think about what I want to do with my time?

Am I willing to work harder than I ever worked before?

If you can scream YES! to answer all three of these questions, art school may be for you.  Hold on, here are three more questions:

Am I equally curious about art and another subject  (biology, psychology, history, literature, drama, whatever else interests you)?

Do I thrive with more structure rather than less?

Are academics exciting for me?

If you honestly answer yes to any of these three questions, art school may not be for you.  It may be that art will always be close to your heart and you will continue to take it seriously, just not as your business.  It may also be true that college, where you will sample and explore varied subjects, is better for you.  You may decide to major in art in college. You may want to take a mirror in art.  Or, if you are ambitious, you could double major.  If you have LOTS of energy, stellar grades and a dynamite portfolio, you may entertain a double degree, like the collaboration between RISD and Brown University.

Where you really honest with yourself?   Good.  Now go make something:)


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