Art is part of our lives from a young age.
From the scribbles of preschool colouring-in to making paper Christmas decorations in primary school, everyone is encouraged to try their best to craft some funky creations. As we move through high school and into uni, we’re suddenly split into two groups: those who are artistic, and those who aren’t.
Primary school craft clutters your parents’ house until it’s thrown away. Your Year 8 art teacher tells you that your siblings are way more creative than you ever were. Art becomes more frustrating than fun, and a lot of us swear off it for good. But it shouldn't be all doom and gloom. Research shows that being creative can actually be good for you, so maybe it’s time to give art a second chance. Here are five reasons that'll get your creative juices flowing!
1. It’s Good For Your Mental Health
Making art is incredibly relaxing, especially if you’re just doing it for fun. It’s proven to relieve stress and calm the mind. Art therapy is a common treatment method for a range of mental illnesses, and adult colouring books have taken the world by storm as a way to clear your thoughts after a stressful day. Schedule a certain time in your week to create art, and try to focus on what you’re making over anything else that might be bothering you.
2. It Changes The Way You Think
We’ve all heard of the two hemispheres of the brain, and how some people are more logic-brained while others are more creative. In reality, however, there isn’t one side that’s in charge of your creative thinking. Both hemispheres need to cooperate to get your artistic talents working, and practice makes perfect. Regular creative output encourages you to creatively solve problems and think outside the box, which definitely comes in handy in other areas of life.
3. You’ll Make New Friends
Social art nights are popping up all over the place lately, and for good reason. Being creative with others is a great way to make new friends and increase the positive effects of making art. There are heaps of cheap art workshops around Sydney every week, so hit up any that take your fancy. If you're not quite confident enough to go alone, take a mate or a date along to an evening ‘drink and draw’ class for a fun, casual artistic experience.
4. It Boosts Your Self Esteem
Remember how good it felt when your parents put your art up on the fridge? Now you can be your own parent and show off what you make. The key is not to compare yourself to others – you should be proud of whatever you create in its own right. Pin your work up around your room, or make an art Instagram to deliver it to the world.
5. You Might Actually Be Good At It
Sure, you might not have excelled in Year 9 painting, and pencils may not draw the way you want them to. But have you tried ceramic covered crochet? Or computer-based graphic design? While traditional school-based art lessons aim to give you a taste of a wide range of mediums, there’s so much more out there that fits into the category of “art”. If Jackson Pollock could flick paint at a canvas and have it sell for $100 million, who’s to say there isn’t a creative niche for you as well.