Growing up as a young artist I didn't have a ton of resources around our community to use to grow my artistic skills. Art wasn't seen as very important. I even remember my teachers laughing that the two classes I was good at were Art and Religion. I remember their tone and my parents tone not being very positive, as if those are the two classes that don't matter.
Then when I opened the gallery, I had a few people ask if they could teach, I thought that sounded great, and shared my space with them. But since art isn't really a booming industry in our community these teachers had to have other sources of income which limited their time to teach. The demand was growing so I steeped into teaching.
In the last 4 years of teaching I have learned so much from my students. First I learned about myself, and how much I would have LOVED to come to a place like the AIE as a kid, teen, or college student. Then I leaned that creative people really are different than other people. Some creative people can think the same as everyone else but have this wonderful edge that makes their minds even more interesting and smart. Other artists can only think with their creative minds. And this creates a struggle in our standardized world. Some of these people have a hard time in school, and others struggle in their carriers.
But these creative minds are special, they are the inventors, and progressive thinkers of the future. They hit a roadblock and then find a way around it. They see a need for something and create the fix for the situation.
As I continue to teach and come up with new lesson plans I realize in a deeper level everyday how important it is to teach creative thinking with in a community. Our world is growing very fast, and there are a lot of creative people out there advancing our futures. If a community wants to keep up it needs to take care of it's local creators. It needs to embrace them and keep them in the community. I hope that this little gallery on the corner of our Downtown is the beginning to that for Monroe. We get lots of young creative thinkers through here, and their faces and minds light up with they see what others have created and get to talk about their own creations.
If you have a creative person in your life, bring them into the gallery, you will enjoy watching them light up! If you are a creative thinker come in an visit! We have wonderful artists on display and we have happy workers and teachers who love to talk about art!!!