If anyone has ever studied in the arts, then they know of the complete lack of respect that others seem to have towards them. “The Arts isn’t a real program. You just chose it because you have less work to do”.
Out of all twenty-one programs at John Abbott, only six of them are in the realm of the arts: Arts & Sciences, ALC, Visual Arts, Liberal Arts, Graphic and Web Design, and Professional Theatre. While being in these programs can give you the benefit of not having any final exams at the end of the semester, there’s a very hard part to studying in the arts in college, and following it as a career.
For one, you have to focus on quality rather than quantity. If you want to make a living, your art pieces must be better than just good. A regular office job demands a lot of work, but all of it is just ‘get it done and it’s done’ type of work. Artists, musicians, filmmakers, and actors have to put hours upon hours into their pieces of work to get them done. The sheer amount of blood, sweat and tears put into their work, combined with self-doubt, uncertainty and a need to improve, explains why artists, especially writers, have some of the highest rates of depression out of any other field of work in the world.
Last year alone, a shocking 9% of people in the creative arts suffered from an episode of major depression, which is huge. Artists also have no guidelines or rules, which doesn’t help when quality matters above all. So many artists struggle to continuously come up with good ideas when they have to start from scratch every single time. Since what goes onto your plate that night depends on how well your work does, that’s another element of stress added to an already stressed person.
People in the arts are doing something that they love, which is what we’re all striving to do in college. It’s just that they are following different guidelines than those in Science, Social Science, and Business programs. This doesn’t mean that they’re lazy, self-centered, or egocentric. Don’t make these assumptions about them. You can never judge someone unless you’ve been in their shoes.
Originally Published on bandersnatch.ca