Artist’s work station. Source: Unsplash

“Don’t think about making art, just get it done.  Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it.  While they are deciding, make even more art.” – Andy Warhol

Be it in the creating or appreciating, there are plenty of misconceptions that surround art.

Plenty of people are deterred from dabbling into the world of art because they believe that it is reserved only for people who are cultured and have means. While it is true that it is easier to buy pieces when you have dispensable income, you don’t need to be rich in order to appreciate beauty. Art is like every other interest or hobby - you only buy what you are interested in and you save up for what you want.

Moreover, art isn’t all about buying paintings and sponsoring artists.

Learning about art can take many forms. More often than not, they are free. In most cities in Canada, like Vancouver and Toronto, museums are free of charge. All you need is a little bit of time to dedicate to immersion.

Aside from the financial requirements, most people who want to have a crack at painting, drawing, or any other form of artistic expression think that their pieces should be perfect at all times. Art is a personal experience. There is no right or wrong way to create a piece. In fact, it is in the imperfections that an art piece becomes interesting and human.

Thinking about introducing more art in your life? Below are a few small steps:

Revisit your Childhood Interests

As children, most people were encouraged to explore any and all activities. The sky is the limit as to what you want to be when you grow up. Unfortunately, as you get older, the realities that you need to face get more real as the years go on. Eventually, you had to make a decision on the career path that you would follow.

For most, pursuing art isn’t the most practical choice. More often than not, people choose a career that would yield a comfortable life.

Art as a hobby doesn’t come with the pressure of making money and being successful. With that said, considering art as a hobby is the perfect time to revisit your childhood dreams.

If you have always wanted to be a painter, there shouldn’t be anything stopping you from buying paint and a paintbrush.

Visit Museums

As with any hobby, art requires your time and attention. We know that it is easier to stay at home and nap on your days off. But if you are really committed to bringing art into your life, taking the time to take inspiration from the works of the masters is an essential.

Fortunately for those who live in big Canadian cities like Calgary and Ottawa, there are plenty of galleries and museums that you can choose from and most of them are free!

You don’t even have to dedicate an entire day to immerse yourself in beautiful art pieces. Going to an exhibit during your lunch break is enough to get your creative juices flowing.

Get a Drawing/Painting Journal

If you have always been the creative and artistic type, doodling is something you probably got reprimanded for when you were still in school. While your former teachers might not have been too keen on your drawing during their class, having your own drawing journal to release your creative juices on is a great way to incorporate art into your life.

As discussed earlier, art doesn’t have to be perfect. In fact, the best ideas are formed when you are not deliberately trying to paint the next Mona Lisa. Doodling can stimulate your creativity and inspire great ideas. It doesn’t hurt that it is relaxing and soothing as well.

Use What You Have on Hand

Most people believe that a new hobby comes with a laundry list of things to buy. With art, the list includes new paintbrushes, tubes of paint, a sketchbook, acrylics, charcoal, an easel, several canvases, and maybe a pottery wheel in case you want to get into  pottery.

Truth be told, you don’t have to buy anything in order to introduce more art into your life. In fact, even the drawing journal is optional. You can use whatever you have on hand. Why not use your phone, for instance, to dabble into photography? The world is your oyster and the oyster doesn’t come with a price tag.

Take Art Classes

Passion and enthusiasm are contagious. Most art tutors in Calgary consider art as their vocation. Having that kind of energy in your life would deepen your relationship with art. Moreover, being surrounded by people who are eager to learn, makes the process easier and more enjoyable.

Fortunately, Calgary is a great place if you are looking to enrol in an art class. The city’s art scene is on the upswing and there is no better time to take part but now.

Enjoying What Calgary Has to Offer: Calgary’s Art Scene

Calgary’s city skyline. Source: Unsplash

Between Calgary and Edmonton, Edmonton seems to have a leg up on Calgary at least when it comes to developing a thriving art scene. Calgary has yet to fund the development of its very own contemporary museum while Edmonton is already home to the Art Gallery of Alberta.

Nevertheless, 2019 marked a great year for art in Calgary. The city has doubled its budget for art-related programs and the effects of the increase in funding can already be felt.

As such, if you are a resident, now is the best time to dip your toes in the burgeoning art scene in the city. Below are a few distinguished galleries that are akin to the ones you can see in trendier cities as Montreal:

Contemporary Calgary

As a city, Calgary currently does not have a government-funded contemporary museum. However, Contemporary Calgary fills the gap quite nicely.

Located in Calgary’s downtown area, Contemporary Calgary is the love child between three of the city’s most reputable art establishments - the Museum of Contemporary Art Calgary (MOCA), the Art Gallery of Calgary (AGC) and the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Art (IMCA). Contemporary Calgary was once a gallery but the collective has shifted its focus to hosting exhibits in several locations in the city to further showcase what Canada has to offer.

TRUCK Contemporary Art

Founded in 1983, TRUCK Contemporary Art is a non-profit artist-run center dedicated to preserving and championing the visual arts scene in Calgary. In its rich 37 year history, the gallery has hosted over 500 contemporary art exhibits split between two venues.

Newzones Gallery

Like TRUCK Contemporary Art, Newzones Gallery is an early player in the contemporary art scene in the city. Home to both local Albertan and international pieces, the exhibits hosted by the Newzones Gallery is world-renowned. Its extensive collection of paintings, sculptures, and mixed media pieces have been picked up by prestigious museums including the Museum of Modern Art, Sculpture Garden, and the Tel Aviv Museum located in Israel.

The New Gallery

Arguably the oldest establishment in this list, The New Gallery was founded in 1975. Previously known as the Clouds & Water Gallery and Visual Production Society, The New Gallery is an artist-run non-profit centre that currently operates in two locations across Calgary’s Chinatown.

Aside from its exhibits, The New Gallery is known for hosting workshops, fundraisers, residencies, and lectures that aim to further the contemporary art scene in Calgary.

Art Classes Near Me: Learning Art in Calgary

Person drawing the human anatomy. Source: Unsplash

The art scene in Calgary is expected to grow in the next few years. As such, it is unsurprising to see the increase in art class options in the area. If you are a local, now is the best time to enroll yourself in a class or to find an art tutor in Calgary that would fit your needs.

Learn Ceramics from the North Mount Pleasant Arts Centre

Already familiar with working a potter’s wheel or firing up a kiln? Renting out the North Mount Pleasant Arts Centre’s ceramics studio might just be the creative space you are looking for.

The studio is equipped with everything you can possibly need in order to create a ceramic masterpiece. Enjoy state of the art equipment and the company of other artists at the North Mount Pleasant Arts Centre!

Acrylic Painting at the Grasby Art Studio

Wanting to learn more about acrylic painting? This Grasby Art Studio class is perfect for you. From colour mixing to hands-on, practical painting, the art tutors at this studio would take you through the beautiful medium of acrylics.

This one-day workshop includes all the supplies that you need to create your very own art piece. Not only do you get a wonderful afternoon of beauty and art, but you also get to take home a painting at the end of the class!

Learning Art with Superprof

Learning art in a class in an effective way to deepen your relationship with art. However, if you want specific results in a specific amount of time, joining a group class just won’t cut it.

We at Superprof offer a personalised art learning experience. You get to decide the art tutor, the schedule, and the specific lessons you’d want to learn. With private mentorship that Superprof offers, you would be painting masterpieces in no time!

Need a Fine arts teacher?

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Mike is a freelance writer with a passion for continuous learning, self-improvement, and helping others through education.