..or is what I am doing useful in anyway?..
Today I wanted to address a problem, which I was struggling with some time ago. You can read about some of those concerns here.
I wanted to bring it to the table again, because I saw one of my fellow miniature makers questioning herself in the description of an instagram picture.
And I don’t mean, she was asking herself a question, no no.. She was questioning in which way her work was useful.
And that is when it hit me. Others in my field of art are also thinking the same! (One is never really alone, but everyone always thinks that instead of asking others if their having the same doubts/thought/troubles..smh)
Because of that I thought I’d write a blogpost to maybe help out others who are having similar thoughts.
So is making miniatures useful?!
Not in the literal sense of the word. A miniature literally just sits in a corner and catches dust.
But if that is a criterium for being “not-useful”, than there are a lot of things and jobs for that matter which could be useless.
We are unfortunately fortunate, to have the privilege of living in the first world. A world filled with wealth, so filled in fact that people need things to show they are wealthier than their neighbor. So they buy jewelry..and later electronics.. or expensive porcelain and silver cutlery…
All things that are rather unimportant and not really useful..they’re mainly for entertainment.. ok, yes you need cutlery at some point of the day..but does it have to be silver?
New jobs appeared out of nowhere to fill privileged peoples wishes.
And having a dollhouse is one of those wishes.
A dollhouse filled with tiny miniature foods.
So..there is a need for it right? Because some people are asking for it.
But is it..”useful”?
No. That is at least my opinion. Yeah sure your work might make someone happy.That#s a ‘useful’-trait. But that isn’t really what you want the answer to this question to be, is it?
NO it’s not helpful in a way that you’re helping poor Children in need. Your work is not curing diseases or solving world hunger.
But you know what. So is a lot of work! And you’re privileged to live in a place where people want to buy miniature food (jewelry) and making those people happy has/is a purpose. So stop complaining!
For me personally it was never in sight to be anything else than a art person. In our world they’re is no need anymore for certain jobs, but on the other hand there is a need for different new jobs f.e. Digital Design.
And yes it is weird thinking that you can’t really save the life of your neighbor if something ever happened to them.. But a lot of people can’t do that. You’re not the only one!
A film that I really recommend, which also touches on this topic is : “Hector and the Search for Happiness” . The movie has a whole lot to say in general. Definitely a ‘must-watch’.But basically it’s about a psychologist who’s looking for what makes people happy. And at one point he asks whether or no his profession is actually of need.
Let’s put it like this:
If what you’re doing makes you and other people happy than that’s a good thing! Even if the happiness comes from being a privileged brat who is able to spend their life doing something they really really love. Like Crafting.
If this thought is still bothering you, look into project that you could help out or donate a certain % of each item you sell to a charity that you like.
That’s at least what I am doing at the moment. Looking for a project.
Let’s help out in our area. We can’t all be doctors without borders. Mostly because we are no doctors…
But there was another answer to the original question which was left by a different lovely ‘colleague’ who replied to her saying something around the lines that Art is never useless or unnecessary…
Which is definitely a way to look at the topic.
Personally, as someone who is studying Art (oops ikr) I do believe that there can be useless art which isn’t really saying anything. There is a reason why a lot of modern and contemporary art is provocative and really important for our society.
I like to look at art with the question..does it change anything? And a lot of the times it does..in my way of thinking for example. Or even looking at it in a certain way.
Is miniature food.. changing anything? Yeah. I guess it is changing work techniques. And interests of people. And all in all..clay as it is gives everyone a great creative outlet. But does miniature food change our society in any way? Mostly not I believe. But does it have to? Maybe..maybe not..That depends on your own views of Art and what you expect to get out of it.
But the whole ‘What is Art’-Discussion is a whole different book.
So let’s get back to the point.
If you’re feeling like your work is useless or unnecessary in anyway change that! In a way that gives you enough reason to continue what you’re doing.
For me that is indeed looking for an organisation to help out, and always remembering : There are people I bring joy to in this world. And if I am not working for those few people what would be the purpose.
Stay happy people! And don’t suppress thoughts. Find solutions to your problems and solve them.