I was just thinking this morning before I went to my studio . . . when I was young, my family and then teachers at school frequently referred to me as "talented" when it came to art making. I was compared to my artist grandmother with whom I was very close. With all the accolades, I believed I had to live up to the reputation. This set me up to be competitive with fellow students. as well as judge myself when tasked to learn new skills. It seemed I should already mysteriously know how to do these things.
This troubled me in college art classes; I compared myself to everyone in my classes. Eventually, I left the art field altogether, relieved of the burden of 'excelling'.
I now know we are all creative, every one of us. How and what we create differs according to our interests. I am very visual, therefore a visual art maker. My sister is very creative with cloth and thread; she creates quilts, upholstery, clothing; she is very skilled artisan. My brothers created homes, building, restoring, remodeling. My daughter is a gourmet cook, crochets and knits at a professional level. My son is a skilled actor, singer and improv artist. Consequently, I join the artist Brian Rutenberg, NYC, in claiming myself as a person who makes art, not an artist. This relieves me of living up to some unreasonable legacy of talent I have to fulfill.
I love creating visual art. I love that I am still learning and growing. And I love hanging out with other people who make art; the shared interest is bliss. Let me know what you think!