“Art School” Stigma
“How will you make money?”
“Will you draw me a tattoo design?”
“Can you draw my portrait?”
“What’s typography, like maps?"
I get it every day, from people I meet on the street, at bars, mostly from those entering mid-life, but very often from my age-rage peers who are simply unaware of the world beyond the college dorm room, midterm paper and economics classes. As a sophomore at a very well-known art and design institute, the reactions I receive are frightening when I explain what I chose to get an education in. I don’t really want to talk to strangers about my art, though occasionally it will peek out in a public space and someone will ask about it.
The best of all, however, was on a bus ride. A middle aged woman sat down next to me and said, “Oh, look, you must be an art student!” (she must have recognized the logo on the bag I was carrying my supplies in, it’s a well known art supply chain) “Well I too am an artist!” and for the next painful forty-five minutes I was shown pictures of Japanese flower arrangements. “Oh, and when you go to Walmart, you can have them printed with these cute frames!”