To my father
You’ve been such a big help to my art. Everyday, you made me practice 10 hours a day to get better. You enrolled me in various summer art workshops just so I could improve my skills. However, now I feel restricted. You’d make me copy from photographs. My creative works were unappreciated by you. You have no knowledge of art, and yet you tell me what I should do, that my works should look like photographs. Plasticine.
I did make money from my art – but that is not what I wanted. The creative impulse in me was kept hidden. This is why I’d always stay up late – I needed to practice anatomy in order for me to be able to compose my own paintings. I’d always tell you that I wanted to compose my painting, yet you’d always reply with this, “You’re too young,as of now, you should copy from photographs first”. Why do you restrict my creative expression?
Art is not just about being skillful. It’s also about being able to transfer the inner machinations of the heart. I want to be able to express my feelings through art. Dad, if you’re reading this, please just give me the time to learn how to compose my own paintings.
The works that my dad wanted me to do were always the ones that can be bought. Even if it was just a study, my dad wanted to sell it. Even if it was just a sketch, he’d frame it. Even if it was just a masterwork, he’d also sell it.
There was a time in art when I wanted to go classical, but he said that these were things of the past. There was a time when I wanted to put textures, he’d say that those were ugly. Dad, I’m sorry to tell you, but your taste in art is very limited.You’re not an artist, so why are you telling me what I should do with my paintbrush?
Why can’t I practice anatomy in the day? It’ll help me get better in my art, right? Why do you insist that I should work from photographs? I’m sorry for all of this, dad, but I’ve matured. I’m not a commercial artist. The reason why I loved art in the first place is because I wanted an outlet where I could express my feelings.
You were always picking what I should paint and what I shouldn’t.
There was a time when I had a project and you wanted to do it instead just so I could paint.It’s not helping me learn, dad.
There was this classical painting workshop that I visit every week. They encouraged me to make my own art. Yet even if my teacher was so great, my dad still didn’t give me the time to practice composition.
You actually thought that if I made more, I’d sell more. Isn’t that commercial art?If it was bigger, it would also have a heftier tag price.
I’m sorry if you can’t understand what I’m saying.
TL;DR: Everyday I have to paint for more than 6 hours. Don’t get me wrong, I love painting, but I just didn’t feel like copying from photographs. I had to express myself.
Sorry for these incoherent words and jumbled ideas. I’m only 15.