"Artists' Work Is Always in Trend": SUSU Celebrates International Artist Day

Traditionally, December 8th is a creativity holiday − International Artist Day, which is celebrated by both professional workers in this field and art lovers. Tatiana Vekovtseva, Head of the Department of Technology and Design at the Institute of Sport, Tourism and Service of South Ural State University, spoke about the specifics of the profession of an artist.

International Artist Day was established in 2007 by the International Association "Art of the Peoples of the World". Initially, it was viewed as a narrowly professional holiday, but over time it has turned into a major social event celebrated in many countries around the world.

– Tatiana, is it easy to be an artist, in your opinion?

– I think it is not easy to be an artist because all artists are partly introverts who withdraw into themselves, constantly experience everything and then embody their experiences on canvas. That is, these people are very emotional and today's world is very difficult for them.

Also, now there is a very active expansion of digital culture, which overshadows and, unfortunately, underestimates the work of artists. Digital art is developing very quickly, copy technologies are also appearing, when you can copy someone’s existing work, and all this is much simpler and faster than the manual labour of an artist. The work of an artist, unfortunately, is devalued, but I can say that the ability to draw by hand and convey your emotions through creative manual labour, which is valuable for an artist, will not go anywhere and will always be in trend.

– What skills and qualities are important for an artist?

– I had a teacher, Sergei Mikhailovich, and every time I remember his words: "I love people, I love children who love to draw." And I think that the most important thing is to love this profession, to love being creative. We can say that such people are "infected" with the disease of creativity; they always want to draw.

It seems to me that, firstly, perseverance is very important for an artist. You can’t stop halfway, you need to constantly look for something. And secondly, it is creativity. Today our Internet world is oversaturated with an insane number of different solutions, and an artist always has to do something new. This is a very important quality of an artist: not to give up and follow your own path.

– In your opinion, is higher education necessary for an artist?

– A person must definitely draw at least 4 hours every day and constantly communicate with professionals. It seems to me that many people become artists without education, but at the same time they study with some artists in their workshops, draw and upgrade their skills, and are fed with energy. Higher education is an education that provides connections with science, and an artist is an applied profession. I believe that secondary specialized education is sufficient for an artist, but it is necessary.

– What does painting mean to you? Is it your hobby or profession?

– I think it is not a profession for me yet. Today there are fewer professional artists, and I do not consider myself a professional artist because I did not graduate from the academy of arts. I studied at the Ural State Academy of Architecture and Arts with a degree in Design and I am an applied artist, that is, every time I think about how this or that painting can be applied to a specific design object.

Painting is, after all, a hobby for me. For example, summer for me is an outlet, it's the time when I can be creative and relaxed, it’s what feeds me, gives me energy, and I put it into the painting.

– How do you recommend finding inspiration for creativity?

– For me, inspiration comes from nature, for example, I can climb the mountain in Nepryakhino settlement, where we have the Nauka recreation centre − for me this is a place of power, I sit down and what I see gives me strength. We often go hiking and paint a lot there.

When working with students, I am inspired by seeing the work of other artists. Every time I tell the guys that before you look for something, look at what has already been created by great artists and modern designers. This gives a powerful incentive to move on.

– What advice would you give to someone just starting out in painting?

– Firstly, you need to love drawing so that the process itself gives you pleasure, and secondly, set certain goals and objectives for yourself. It is very important that as soon as you start painting, first just draw, and then set a goal, and once it is achieved, it is important to understand and consider your mistakes, consult with teachers. In our department, all the teachers are very competent with different characters and styles. Every student can approach anyone, we will always answer everyone and help solve any problem. A consultation with a professional gives you the opportunity to understand where you made a mistake and where you need to overcome yourself. This constant overcoming of ourselves is probably what our life is, because if we just live and go with the flow, we will not achieve anything.

– Please tell us about your department. What do students learn here?

– The name of the department "Technology and Design" consists of two words and, accordingly, two majors are immediately defined. First, it is design. We now have graphic design, and we plan to open industrial design starting from this year. And the second major is the technology of artistic processing of materials − this is more connected with applied creativity (dolls, felting, etc.), that is, with manufacturing technologies. The basic subjects studied at the department are the same, that is, students study painting, drawing, art history, composition, colour science in the 1st and 2nd academic years. These subjects are the basis with which they can go into different specializations and then apply these basics. For example, in the 4th year of artistic interior design we do public interiors of cafes and restaurants, and every time I remind students to remember what I told them about in the 1st year and where they can apply this knowledge in their projects. We can say that in the 1st and 2nd years it is mainly propaedeutics for the development of skills and abilities, and in the 3rd and 4th years the students are already creating full-fledged projects and putting their ideas into them.

Автор: Анастасия Косочева
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