I met a painter today in an unlikely situation. When I told the painter that I was also a painter he was visibly stirred. We were in a situation where it would come as a surprise to meet another painter. He was caught off guard.
Why is it when artists meet each other, they aren’t excited to run into one another? What would be the downside to meeting another artist. Competition? I’m not sure. I am personally excited when I meet other artists, especially at my age when art has fallen away for most all together. This painter told me that he hasn’t painted since his kid was born over three years ago. A common story.
I’ve personally kept up with art off and on as a hobby since my son was born, not with any great consistency, but I’ve kept it up none the less. It is a radical effort to keep making art with no real career in the arts after one has children. Everything else is pressing, money, jobs, homes, cars, relationships. Art is not pressing. It is almost unthinkably unpressing.
I also play soccer. When I randomly meet another person that still plays soccer, we’re stoked to meet each other. Like hell yeah. Where do you play? How often? Have you had injuries? Do you watch or just play? We should hang out some time and play.
Why doesn’t art work the same way? Why should older artists not be immediate friends the way that people who have other hobbies are. Bowling. Skateboarding. Reading. Bicycling. Cooking. Drinking. Any other hobby at all in common would call for immediate kinship, but art does not.