Just for Fun - What is Studio Craft?

Art can (and should) have an element of spontaneity, with each piece a unique expression. Yet, there are aspects of visual art that must be done well each time. This is what we mean when we say "studio craft".

Studio Craft encompasses skills and knowledge to realize intent and ensure durable results. It also involves being able to duplicate results reliably each time, and the willingness to reject what doesn't meet acceptable standards (even from one's own hand).

Studio craft is about choosing good quality materials and using them well. It's the care you take stretching canvas, handling papers, or filling scratches on a frame.

Good craftsmanship closes the distance between viewer and object by removing any elementthat might distract from the viewing experience. Unintentional or careless elements like ripples in the weave of a stretched canvas, fingerprints on a drawing or flashing on a sculpture can often state themselves more loudly than the artist's intended subject.

Some artists reject the idea of craftsmanship. Man Ray said, "The streets are full of admirable craftsmen, but so few practical dreamers." This statement implies, however, that craft somehow stifles creativity.

In fact, facility with materials can remove barriers to creativity by giving fluidity to process. A deep engagement with the physical process can add depth and meaning to the art object. This depth is apparent to the viewer as well.

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