Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Every so often there'll be a fellow student in one of my art classes who is not an art student. And then there will be the one who is Not An Art Student, lemme tell you all about it.

On the whole, I get along with both of the above types. They're fun and not as afraid of failure as the artsy kids because, let's face it, it doesn't matter as much to them. Which isn't to say they don't work hard. They do, even when they signed up for the class expecting an easy A and found out that it wasn't is going to be as simple as they thought.

For my electronic arts class, I'm currently doing a project with one of these Not An Art Student types. He's a cool dude* and we share a several Completely Nerdy interests; also he speaks Geometry and I speak Calculus, so our dialects overlap a little bit.

So we get to talking as we're working (he's drafting, I'm hunting down materials on the internet) and at one point he says 'Y'know, I've noticed that most of the people in here have very in-your-face personalities.'

Which is...true? I guess? I replied that it was because if we weren't like that, who would notice us? The odds of getting 'discovered' are so dismal that, well, it doesn't really bear thinking about, does it?

But the question kept niggling away at the back of my mind. This guy was really only familiar with the people in the electronic arts class, and I had been finding the other students to be frustratingly retiring and unassertive. It's probably that none of us are all that familiar with the media that we're learning, but the projects have mostly seemed to be lacking in daring, despite the fact that our teacher keeps saying things like 'art is meant to challenge.'

So does this say something about me, that I expect more from these people? Or does it say something about the world outside the art school walls, that they expect less?

I think that this article at Psychology Today helped clarify some of it, but I don't know that I can see enough of the situation from where I am in the system to be able to give any definite answers. Maybe that aren't any. Chalk it up to weirdness.

*This is actually one of my highest compliments for a friendly acquaintance, but I realize it could sound a little odd over the internet. Probably in real life, too. Doesn't stop me.

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