I had a funny conversation recently with an artist. Upon learning that I have kids and make art she remarked, “Oh — I have two grown children, and I think they really suffered as children because I was an artist.” I am not quite sure what to do with that bit of information: abandon all art-making quick, in an effort to spare my still-young kids? Or keep working, but brace myself for that future day when they announce I’ve ruined their lives?
My theory has always been that an art-household can be a great place for kids, but I do often feel guilty about the time and money that go into my art. So this artist’s comment, and the inescapable “difficult economic times”, really made me think twice. Does my artmaking foster a creative household or is it just a selfish, expensive hobby? I decided I wanted a larger sample size. I asked a bunch of artist-parent-friends to share their impressions of making art as parents (or what it had been like for them growing up with artist-parents). I also got the chance to talk with Todd Deutsch, a photographer and parent of three boys on his experiences making art in — and about — his very busy home.
Over the next week or two, I’ll post the responses.