Rock Paper Scissors

Let’s Play

Photo by Donovan Valdivia on Unsplash

I love playing with art supplies. Notice I said ‘art’ supplies. That’s not exactly true. My guilty secret is I love doing crafts.

It’s embarrassing, really.

I know a lot of artists — and lets be frank. People can sometimes be a bit pretentious about art. For me, the lines between the two — art and craft — are blurry.

Of the two, craft is the most defined, especially traditional crafts. They are said to be — made by hand, from traditional materials, using a traditional skill and often used in daily life.

It’s interesting to consider how many functional crafts have been made with an artistic flair. Pottery is a great example. A simple vessel to carry water has been refined and redesigned as beautiful art.

image by Openclipart-Vectors by Pixabay

Often Art and Craft are compared, with some interesting results.

Physicality

Craft is often described as structured, which imposes the idea of limitation on it. Art, on the other hand is said to be very unstructured and open ended. Consider how a simple jug can be created with a structure, but no limitation on the design of the vessel or the decoration. The lines between the two blur.

Feelings

Some say art invokes emotion while craft is considered more a work that results in an output. In other words, a painting is said to inspire emotions while a piece of pottery is more functional.

I’ve stood in front of paintings that have inspired only indifference (my opinion). I am in the possession of a plain brown clay figurine in the shape of a small pig. I’ve had that figurine for over 20 years. I bought it from a young hippie on a commune in the 70’s and the little pig always makes me smile because of the quirkiness of his snout and the curl of his tail. Emotions.

Mind/Body disconnect

Art is said to come from the heart and soul while crafts are from your body. Crafts are said to be a skill of making things by hand. I’ve tried to make art, particularly drawing and can tell you, unless you were born with the ability, drawing is a skill that takes time to learn.

Crafts also require a lot of inspiration during the creative process, unless you are creating the same thing over and over again.

In this debate, the lines have become so blurry that I call bullshit.

And I just like to play with scissors and glue.

 

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