To Anyone Who Doesn't Think Of Themself As A "Real" Artist

To Anyone Who Doesn't Think Of Themself As A "Real" Artist

All your art has to be is yours.
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Dear Artist (Yes, you!),

Even though I’ve been making art for my entire life, it took me a long time to start thinking of myself as an artist. I had always thought that, because I never sold my work or got it published or anything like that, that somehow that made me just some fool who messed around with pencils and paint in their spare time. A true artist, to me, was more than someone who just made art as a hobby. Now, however, I have found it in myself to be proud of all my work because I’ve come to learn that there is no such thing as “real” or “fake” art. All your art has to be is yours.

I have been fortunate enough to have art teachers who instilled this in their students. Never did I feel degraded or ignored because I made something that didn’t look exactly like my reference image or the examples the teacher showed from previous classes. Starting from kindergarten, all the way up through middle school and high school, the art room was always my favorite place to be. I have found that artistic people are often very kind, so if you’re looking for input or inspiration, don’t be afraid to ask. My art teachers have become close friends, instilling in me from a very early age that you are never done learning. Even though I have had this for my entire life, it is never too late to take up art and learn how to share your creativity. Art provides a bridge between you and everyone else, giving people a way to understand each other better in a world where that is often difficult.

You might say that you don’t make art simply because you have nothing that inspires you to do so. Inspiration, however, is everywhere. It’s frustrating until you find it, but it’s the best feeling when everything falls into place. Often, you never know where something’s going to end up until you start, so don’t be hesitant if you don’t have a plan. The finished product doesn’t have to rival a Monet or a Picasso to be considered art. We are often shown art that has a very particular style, and we come to expect the same type of thing out of ourselves. But that’s not all there is. All around the world, different cultures have made different art, and each and every piece has its own unique meaning. This will be true for your art as well.

In short, if you want to be an artist, you are. Whether it's drawing, painting, photography, songwriting, makeup, calligraphy, animation or however else you express your creativity, your art is valid. You have unique ideas, so if you want to express them, go ahead! We all have expectations based on what we’ve seen and been shown, but don’t let those stop you. Don’t let the other voices in the world drown yours out. No art is bad art — we all have to grow and learn as we go. As stated by the philosopher Ananda Coomaraswamy, “The artist is not a special kind of person, rather, each person is a special kind of artist.”

Sincerely, A Fellow Artist.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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31 Reasons Why I Would NEVER Watch Season 2 Of '13 Reasons Why'

It does not effectively address mental illness, which is a major factor in suicide.
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When I first started watching "13 Reasons Why" I was excited. I had struggled with depression and suicidal thoughts for a long time and thought this show would be bringing light to those issues. Instead, it triggered my feelings that I had suppressed.

With season two coming out soon, I have made up my mind that I am NEVER watching it, and here is why:

1. This show simplifies suicide as being a result of bullying, sexual assault, etc. when the issue is extremely more complex.

2. It does not effectively address mental illness, which is a major factor in suicide.

3. The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention has guidelines on how to portray suicides in TV shows and movies without causing more suicides.

"13 Reasons Why" disregarded those guidelines by graphically showing Hannah slitting her wrists.

4. It is triggering to those who have tried to commit suicide in the past or that struggle with mental illness.

5. It glorifies suicide.

6. It does not offer healthy coping solutions with trauma and bullying.

The only "solution" offered is suicide, which as mentioned above, is glorified by the show.

7. This show portrays Hannah as dramatic and attention-seeking, which creates the stereotype that people with suicidal thoughts are dramatic and seeking attention.

8. Hannah makes Clay and other people feel guilty for her death, which is inconsiderate and rude and NOT something most people who commit suicide would actually do.

9. This show treats suicide as revenge.

In reality, suicide is the feeling of hopelessness and depression, and it's a personal decision.

10. Hannah blames everyone but herself for her death, but suicide is a choice made by people who commit it.

Yes, sexual assault and bullying can be a factor in suicidal thoughts, but committing suicide is completely in the hands of the individual.

11. Skye justifies self-harm by saying, "It's what you do instead of killing yourself."

12. Hannah's school counselor disregards the clear signs of her being suicidal, which is against the law and not something any professional would do.

13. The show is not realistic.

14. To be honest, I didn't even enjoy the acting.

15. The characters are underdeveloped.

16. "13 Reasons Why" alludes that Clay's love could have saved Hannah, which is also unrealistic.

17. There are unnecessary plot lines that don't even advance the main plot.

18. No one in the show deals with their problems.

They all push them off onto other people (which, by the way, is NOT HEALTHY!!!).

19. There is not at any point in the show encouragement that life after high school is better.

20. I find the show offensive to not only me, but also to everyone who has struggled with suicidal thoughts.

21. The show is gory and violent, and I don't like that kind of thing.

22. By watching the show, you basically get a step-by-step guide on how to commit suicide.

Which, again, is against guidelines set by The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention.

23. The show offers no resources for those who have similar issues to Hannah.

24. It is not healthy for me or anyone else to watch "13 Reasons Why."

25. Not only does the show glorify suicide, but it also glorifies self-harm as an alternative to suicide.

26. Other characters don't help Hannah when she reaches out to them, which could discourage viewers from reaching out.

27. Hannah doesn't leave a tape for her parents, and even though the tapes were mostly bad, I still think the show's writers should have included a goodbye to her parents.

28. It simplifies suicide.

29. The show is tactless, in my opinion.

30. I feel like the show writers did not do any research on the topic of suicide or mental illness, and "13 Reasons Why" suffered because of lack of research.

31. I will not be watching season two mostly because I am bitter about the tastelessness.

And I do not want there to be enough views for them to make a season three and impact even more people in a negative way.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
Cover Image Credit: Netflix

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5 Failed YA Movie Franchises

Not all of them can do as good as 'The Hunger Games'.
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There are many succesful young adult movie franchises. Twilight, The Hunger Games and Harry Potter are just a few. But for as many succesful ones, there are just as many franchises that did not work out exactly as they wanted them to. Here are just a few. Hopefully the upcoming 'The Darkest Minds' will have more success.

1. The Mortal Instruments (2013)

Now we have 'Shadowhunters', but there was also a movie based on 'The Mortal Instruments' series written by Cassandra Clare. This movie didn't do as good unfortunately. The movie starred Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower. I personally enjoyed it, but it was very different from the books. 'Shadowhunters' is also very different from the books, but does follow the general storyline.

2. Percy Jackson (2010, 2013)

Percy Jackson lasted two movies! But still the differences from the novels weren't accepted by fans and the movies kind of failed. They were enjoyable, but not what the fans wanted.

3. Beautiful Creatures (2013)

I enjoyed 'Beautiful Creatures' when I first saw the movie, but then I read the book. Honestly they messed this up so bad. The casting was perfect, honestly, but they changed they story so badly that it just couldn't be fixed. Even though the other books really had potential.

4. The 5th Wave (2016)

Same goes for this one. I really liked it, but the general public didn't seem to. I haven't read the book yet, so I can't Judge on the differences. The others aren't being made into film, that's for sure.

5. Divergent (2014, 2015, 2016)

This is quite a sad story. Divergent was made into a movie, same goes for Insurgent and the first half of Allegiant. But because Allegiant did so bad at the box office, the second part of Allegiant, titled Acsendant was brutally cancelled. The last words haven't been said about this, at least that's what they're telling us, because I think they are tho.

Cover Image Credit: IGN

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