Julia van Houtenwww.ArtPal.com/Julia_vanHouten
I get art.
As a high school graduate, I can tell you firsthand I don’t “get” a lot of things. I don’t get why the entire world is so intent on constantly fighting, or why at the age of eighteen I’m supposed to know exactly what the rest of my life is going to look like, or why they don’t just tell you on the package that the cookies will continue to cook once they’re out of the oven. But the one thing that I do understand is art. To me, it’s always been natural. Of course, I’ve had to work at it, but working at art has never been a chore.
I was first introduced to art by my parents. Throughout my childhood, they made sure I was immersed in opportunities for creativity, from piano and violin to ballet and tap. Weaved in among those classes would be various visual art lessons, but mostly I chose to dabble in art on my own. As I grew, so did my talent, and I began to flourish as a young artist.
Over the years, painting began to overwhelm the other forms of art when it came to choosing a medium. It can transform from realism to abstract, bold color to stark black and white, in ways no other element of visual art can. I try to mimic the flexibility paint can grant me to my decisions in real life. Thinking about art helps me simplify things, as I know I understand art better than real life. For example, I can compare the decision about different types of brush strokes to which math class to take, and immediately it’s simplified. There’s something raw and pure about paint literally spilling from my brush and creating something completely of my own. In my daily life, my paintings represent control. I can create whatever I want, without any limits.
Throughout my high school art, I began to cultivate a desire to represent emotion through my art. I want to make people feel something when they look at my work, whether it’s represented through the color or the brushstrokes. My decision to venture into the art community reflects that ideal. As cliché as it is, I believe that you have to be the change you want to see in the world, and I think I can do that through art.
And art just…really gets me, you know?