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A Student Guide to Street Art: How to Create a Masterpiece 2019-10-31

A Student Guide to Street Art: How to Create a Masterpiece

Ray Campbell is an artist, world-traveler, and freelancer. His artistic skills brought him to Valparaiso, South America, where he is now teaching creativity. Ray’s main goal is to teach artists how to think freely.

One of the most essential traits of becoming successful in life is creativity. If you are able to define it, think about it constructively, and use it appropriately, you will win at this game called life. There are two components of creativity – originality, which is a unique idea, and functionality, which means that the idea that you are having is able to produce results.

Now, results can vary, depending on your occupation, hobbies, and interests. Nevertheless, if you are a painter, functionality means being able to express yourself through painting so that others will understand your hidden meaning; if you are a teacher, creativity means explaining new concepts in such an innovative way that children grasp information faster; it all depends on who you are, what you do, and how you choose to implement this beautiful trait into your life.
Today, we will be talking about street art – I promise it’s not as boring as assignment writing – so, what does it take to be a street artist and how can one create a masterpiece?

1. Let your mind flow free
The first thing to understand is that art doesn’t come from the mind – it comes from your senses, and most importantly, from your intuition. It’s not like you can search for innovative ideas, as you can search for how to write an assignment. It takes time and patience to get there, but most importantly, introspection.
If you are struggling too much to think about the art that you will be creating and thus, never get started, calling you an artist might not be appropriate. Successful artists are successful because they do not pursue success; they let their minds flow into the free realm & follow their intuition. If there is one lesson you should remember, it’s this: always follow your intuition!
Tip: meditation might help you slow down the overthinking; listening to classical music might inspire you.

2. Your existence – what does it mean to you?
One of the tips on starting assignment right is thinking about your own life – why do you exist? Why are you here now, reading this? What does life mean to you? Explore this first, and then go on to the next step. You would be surprised by how much you can learn from your unconscious mind. Bringing ideas into the conscious mind help you brainstorm easier and faster – but again, this is not something you can do overnight. It takes a while to get used to working with your own self.
Tip: keep a dream journal and write your dreams down as soon as you wake up; read some Jung.

3. Make something
Okay, now it’s time to start making something – if you already have a pretty clear idea, you should literally just get started on your work. There are various types of street art, from spray paint murals, to stencils, sticker street art, or yarn bombing. Whichever it is that you are passionate about, just start doing it.
If, on the other hand, you are not completely sure about your project, think about it this way. There are three common themes present in most work arts, whether they are paintings, drawings, songs, etc.:
1. The past
2. The modern world
3. The futuristic world, or post-modernism

Once you’ve chosen a theme, it will be easier for you to work with the ideas flowing up and down your mind. Start with an ideological basis and create something along that theme. A good idea would be to write it down first. “But what if I am bad at writing? How will I write my assignment?” You can always reach out to a friend or to different services online.
Now that you have a clear idea of what you want to express, select the best colors and shapes to illustrate it. Don’t forget, choose to use your intuition.

4. Take breaks
If you will be spending too much time painting or designing your masterpiece and not enough time away from it, you might seriously go crazy! Make sure you continue living and enjoying the usual activities that you used to pursue; some people get so caught up in creating the perfect art piece that they forget to sleep or eat! Take regular breaks and go live life; then, come back to it. Trust me, your ideas will multiply by the time you return. “I, for one, go back to my school duties when taking art breaks. I write my university assignment, maybe even do some math quizzes, and then come back to work on my masterpiece. It always helps,” confirms Talia Necking, street artist at Valparaiso Commerce.

5. Your argument
Last but not least, you’ll have to make an argument about your work. Every person has an individual perception, so you’ll have to be able o convey your message to the wide public. You can leave your masterpiece up for interpretation as well, but the main idea must be present, in order to become successful. So, even if it’s an abstract piece of street art, give it a name according to your views and beliefs.

Don’t struggle too much to “create a masterpiece,” rather work on yourself! This way, your chances of creating a masterpiece will rise by an exponential rate. Make sure you stay true to yourself and your passion, follow your intuition, and make a relevant argument, even if your art is abstract. Good luck, my dear artist! You got this!

(Photos licensed under CC BY-NC)

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