Home Arts & Culture Should Young Artists Be Encouraged or Discouraged?

Should Young Artists Be Encouraged or Discouraged?


In nearly all issues of art magazines, there is usually an article or two about an artist’s success story or an upcoming artist who narrates their journey through the world of art.

Sadly, it is usually the case the almost each of these artists seems to have received some discouragement from pursuing art at one time or another in their lives. No matter the level of talent or enthusiasm the young artist exhibited, there was always one or more people, sometimes even an art teacher, parent, counselor, who vehemently discouraged any idea of becoming an artist whenever they became of age.

Why Does This Happen?

Sometimes, even if children have artistic parents, they usually get discouraged from even the thought of becoming an artist. Children are so thoroughly dissuaded from the arts such that even after years of college struggles in choosing a major, they never even consider art as an option.

However, it is not clear why many non-artists (and even artists) are quick at discouraging someone that it is impossible to do art for a living, and it is a sure path to poverty and anguish.

Even though it is a difficult path, there are also numerous other paths in life that are difficult. For instance, being a doctor is not a piece of cake. Medical school is very difficult. It requires many years, costs an arm and a foot, and leaves the student stressed up due to a huge debt burden. Moreover, this does not even take into account the internship done after graduating. However, parents never discourage their children from becoming doctors.

The reason is that they believe, being a doctor is a guarantee for employment and a lump sum salary. On the contrary, they imagine that all artists are poor and that art is for those who never made it academically. Statistically speaking, more doctors earn better than artists. There are also doctors who struggle financially, and there are artists who are doing quite well.

Are There Some Parents Who Discourage White-Collar Careers?

There are very few to no parents who ever discourage their children from becoming doctors, lawyers, pilots, engineers, etc. They find it a source of pride for parents whenever their children partake in such courses. However, having y0our son or daughter grow up to become an artist is a fact to be ashamed of.

Some students graduate from college with degrees in “prestigious” traditional colleges. Nevertheless, after a few months, or even years they come to an epiphany that a particular career just not just cut it for them. They undergo much frustration as they try to find something they can enjoy.

It reaches a point whereby they finally quit their jobs and pursue their artistic passions. Most parents normally respond with shock and deep concern for their children. Even art teachers are not left out of this too. They usually believe that someone who takes art as a career can either become a teacher or a starving artist.

Every day we constantly witness success stories of artists who managed to make it to a certain extent despite all odds whether it is in still life, landscape, portrait art, etc. what’s more, they are earning considerably well while still undertaking jobs they are passionate about.

Fortunately, some parents understand and support whatever their child aspires to become. They will even facilitate the process by:

  • Availing the requisite material
  • Facilitating networking
  • Giving information about relevant educational events

This is the right action to take as a parent. They should emphasize the importance of passion and effort in whatever one does. This is a surefire way of attaining success in any endeavor. Even when you want to become good at writing an essay, you need to put in the requisite effort and continuously practice until you perfect your writing aptitude.

Any time someone reads a story about a successful artist who made it despite all odds, they should contemplate how life would have been if they gave up the pursuit. There are also numerous other potential artists out there who listened to discouragements given by parents, teachers, peers, and others. Right now they are working unhappily in some dead-end jobs they seriously hate. The world has been denied their art, whereas they have been denied their dreams. This makes them live a life of utter dissatisfaction.

Therefore, it is important to allow children to discover their natural strengths and work on them. By discouraging them, you might end up destroying a dream.

Sonia is the heart and the artist of the team. She loves art and all that it implies. As Sonia says, good music, a well directed movie, or attending a music or film festival melts people’s heart and make them better. She is great at painting and photography. Working on scrapbooks is her favorite activity.