More job opportunities for creative careers
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“Art helps us identify with one another and expands our notion of we – from the local to the global” Olafur Eliasson. Art is a vehicle for social change, and expresses culture. Arts and culture represent the place in society in which people can come together even if they see the world in radically different ways. Disagreement is accepted and is actually in fact vital when it comes to the arts and cultural expression. However there are many obstacles about art which discourage many students finishing school from moving into an art career, whether it be actor, dancer, painter, writer or designer.
Firsty there is no security within these professions. When it comes to creativity, you either make it or you don’t. A lot of people generally don’t have art careers due to the sad truth, that it doesn’t pay very well, and is generally time consuming, difficult, and often thankless work. On top of this, there is widely varied standards of living. Personally, I don’t understand why this is a reality. The definition of art is so broad it it’s difficult to understand why it’s so hard to make it in that area of work.
Logical careers involving maths or science often don’t rely on how people perceive something, they’re mostly factual. However creative careers do, in fact they’re almost completely based off of perception. This arguably makes them a lot more emotionally draining, but can also be seen as fueling and inspiring. The constant input of personal experience and perception is needed in a society for people to express their feelings and thoughts, and then relate to each other. I think that a work of art, may it be a song, a play, a poem, a novel, or a painting, can make us more tolerant of difference and of one another.
“All forms of art are parallel expressions. Writing is not unlike painting or other artistic endeavors. Each artistic endeavor is an expression of the mystery of the world.”
However, creative careers are very unstable paths, which bring irregular paychecks, uncertain hours, and isolation. With very unstable wages, students who choose to go into these creative careers usually have little to no time to input effort into their goals and dreams. Most of the time, they have to get other jobs in order to afford their work within their chosen creative career. These extra jobs can then restrict creative vision. Students in these kinds of situations are usually discouraged by friends and family to focus on other jobs, and other areas of study, due to the foreign outcome of their goals. With these creative careers there’s no regularity, which eventually takes a toll on one’s mentality.
“Depression is not uncommon to those who are drawn to work in the arts, and then the lifestyle contributes to it.”
That then brings me to my next point. Mental health can be affected by these kinds of problems. Insecurity, not only with finance, but also stability and regularity often creates problems with happiness. Careers in art create great stress on students going into that direction. Too much stress evidently leads to effects on mental, and physical health, minor or major. Such things as chronic stress can lead to increased risk of some physical health problems, including obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and weakened immune system. Development of mood disorders have been linked to stress in many studies. These include things such as anxiety disorders and depression. The American Psychological Association’s latest stress survey says, the 66% of people experience physical symptoms of stress regularly, and 63% experience psychological symptoms. Effects like these can change one’s daily life, and can then also lead the student to make premature career choices.
Creative people are prone to depression and anxiety. This is due to them having some characteristics that make them more vulnerable. Creative people experience high rates of mood disorders, considerably more than the general population. However, these extremes of highs and lows tend to be brief, and are balanced by long periods of normal affect, or euthymia. This term is defined as a ‘normal non-depressed, reasonably positive mood.
Mental illness can, on the other hand aid creativity too. Association between mental illness and creativity first appeared in literature in the 1970s, but the idea of a link between “madness” and “genius” is much older, dating back at least to the time of Aristotle. Not only does it provide inspiration, but it also serves as a form of therapy for those recovering from a mental illness or addiction.
With limited financial support for students, money is always going to be one of the main factors when it comes to success in any creative career. Art is needed for expression and culture, and money and time heavily affect that. The vicious cycle of no money, no job, no opportunity, less money, no success.
This needs to be changed. One way might be for an experienced person to come into schools and inform students about possible pathways for the future. Students need to be informed about the places to go and things to do, in order to achieve their ideal career. There also needs to be more more stable job opportunities and for students to use to get to where they need to be, and more accessible career choices, with sufficient income. Also, there could be availability of more art scholarships. Because the arts may not be taken as seriously as say, science or maths, many schools don’t usually give away scholarships to students pursuing art careers. There needs to be more courses which are relevant to the real world within tertiary education, therefore helping the student to get the knowledge in order to help them succeed. Lastly, there needs to be more job opportunities for students pursuing art careers. After tertiary education, many students have to make their money off part time jobs which are unrelated to their goals. Because of the lack in opportunities for these students, these jobs usually end up being something along the lines of washing dishes or waiting tables. With more opportunities for jobs within their ideal profession, they can then reach their goals faster.