Over the past few months, I’ve grown increasingly addicted to watching videos about mixed media techniques and art journal pages on Youtube. Youtube is an invaluable resource for garnering new tips and tricks to use in your art, and I love seeing everyone’s individual style.
Or rather, I loveD seeing everyone’s individual style. More often than not, art journal pages and collages have started to look just like everyone else’s. Everyone’s using the same products in the exact same ways– all in the name of the mixed media “style.” I really object to this new attitude for a lot of reasons. I guess what bothers me the most is when Youtubers refer to mixed media as a “style.” Mixed media is not a “style” like Pop Art or Impressionism, it’s simply a description of the materials you use. The whole point of choosing mixed media as your medium is to have the freedom and flexibility to create things that are unique to YOU. Don’t defeat the purpose by trying to be like someone else!
Also, there seems to be a total abandonment of craftsmanship and intention! Jackson Pollock literally threw paint on canvas, but you can bet that he calculated precisely where each splat would be placed. Doing shoddy work because “it’s mixed media and it’s okay” is really quite despicable. If you’re creating for YOU and for your own enjoyment, take a little pride in what you’re doing, ESPECIALLY if you’re putting it out there for others to learn from. If anything, YOU deserve better from yourself!
I know, I know. There are no rules to art. And who am I to judge anyway? It’s just disheartening that people, I feel, are limiting themselves by trying to mimic a certain “style” instead of steering their creativity and imagination in their own unique direction.