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What Should You Not Do In Art Class

Art is an open-ended form of expression and creativity. It is an opportunity to problem-solve and learn new skills.

But, as with any class, there are things that you should not do in an art class environment. In this article, we will discuss 13 things to avoid in an art class.

1. Don’t Come to Class Unprepared

Coming to class without the necessary supplies and materials will limit your ability to get the most out of the class. It is important to take the time to review the syllabus and make sure you have the required supplies before the class begins.

Things such as a sketchbook, certain art supplies, and personal items may be necessary for completing class assignments. In addition, being prepared for class also means having a general understanding of the assignments and the topics you will be working with. While the teacher will provide further instruction and support, having a basic knowledge of the concepts and techniques will be valuable to staying on top of the material.

2. Don’t Rush Your Art Projects

Art projects can range from short small works to large-scale pieces. But regardless of the size and complexity of the work, you should never feel rushed or pressured to complete your art projects faster than you are comfortable with. Quality and creative expression should be the primary focus, which may take time and require multiple attempts.

The process will help you to develop better problem-solving skills and foster a better understanding of the material. Additionally, taking your time with your art projects will reduce the risk of making mistakes or causing damage to the work.

You should also be sure to plan ahead, so you are not stuck in a tight and potentially stressful situation the night before a project is due.

3. Don’t Copy Other Artists

Taking inspiration from other artists is encouraged and is no secret in the art world. Ideas and techniques can be learned from others, however, it is important to avoid outright copying the work of other artists.

Duplicating someone else’s work will not help to further your own understanding and progress as an artist. With that said, it is also important to make sure you are giving credit when due. If you are drawing inspiration from another artist, cite the source and acknowledge where you got the idea.

It is a sign of respect to provide credit, and can ensure that appropriate praise is given where it is due.

4. Don’t Rely on Technology

We have seen the rise of technology and digital art tools in recent years. While digital tools may be useful for creating digital artwork, or to speed up the painting process, it should not be relied upon exclusively.

Digital tools are not seen as a proper substitute for the traditional tools that many artists use. Using traditional art tools, such as pencils, paints and brushes, will help you to develop a better understanding of the art fundamentals and gain more control over your artistic expression. Digital tools should be used as a supplement to traditional art tools, but not as a primary tool or method.

5. Don’t Be Ashamed to Seek Assistance

Art classes are filled with people of varying skill levels and backgrounds. Some students may be experienced and have greater knowledge of art fundamentals, while others may be more inexperienced. With that said, there is nothing to be ashamed of if you need help or support with your art projects.

It is perfectly normal to seek guidance from the teacher, fellow classmates or other resources. Whether you are having difficulty understanding a concept, or you are unsure of how to approach a project, it is important to not be afraid or feel discouraged to seek advice.

Don’t let pride stand in the way of your progress and learning. Ask questions, discuss ideas, and even bounce project ideas off of others.

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Take Risks

Art is a way to express one’s self and tell stories. Taking creative risks with your artwork can be beneficial in many ways. Taking creative risks can help you to discover new techniques, learn to think more critically, and challenge yourself to develop unique styles.

Trying something new also helps to keep you engaged and will give you more ownership over your work. It is important to be mindful of the project requirements, but don’t be afraid to explore and try something that deviates from the standard techniques.

Risks can lead to success or failure, but it is a great opportunity to learn from your mistakes and grow from the experience.

7. Don’t Become Complacent

Many times, when students become more familiar with the concept and techniques of painting, or sculpture, for example, they may become comfortable and complacent with their skills. This can be a natural reaction, but it should be avoided when possible. Complacency often leads to art pieces becoming stagnant and uninspired.

It is important to keep challenging yourself, regardless of your skills. This could be as small as trying out a new approach to familiar projects, to something as drastic as creating a completely new kind of art.

Reaching out of your comfort zone is a great way to develop as an artist and hopefully create more unique and remarkable pieces.

8. Don’t Be Critical of Other’s Work

No matter the level of expertise, everyone is growing, learning, and improving their skills in the art world. With that in mind, it is important to provide constructive and encouraging criticism, not just criticism. Avoid being overly critical or dismissive of other artists and their works.

Not everyone creates art in the same way, or for the same purpose. Validate the art and value of others, even if it does not reflect your own art style.

Providing encouragement and offering to help others will not only benefit them, but also you, as you can learn from others as well.

9. Don’t Hesitate to Experiment

Experimenting with materials and tools can be beneficial in many ways. Depending on the material, the effects can vary and the results can often be unpredictable.

Experimenting can help you discover new techniques, and foster unique approaches to your artwork. Try something new and unexpected, it can be a great way to engage and motivate yourself. Be mindful of the project requirements as well as your safety, but don’t be afraid to test out new methods, materials, and techniques.

10. Don’t Attend Class When Sick

Classroom settings can amplify the spread of illness and should be avoided when possible. If you are feeling unwell, take the necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of the other students and the teacher.

Staying home and resting when ill is important for a multitude of reasons. Not only will it limit the risk of spread and transmission, but it will also give you the rest that you need to get better without hindering your classwork.

11. Don’t Ignore Criticism

Receiving criticism is an important part of art and should not be taken personally. No matter how unhelpful or discouraging it may seem, every criticism offers a unique opportunity to learn and improve.

The feedback may provide insight that you have not considered and can help you understand what needs to be done to further your understanding and progress. Take the criticism with a grain of salt, and think of it as an opportunity to further your development. Try to remain open-minded, and look for constructive advice that can help you make progress.

12. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Comparison is a natural instinct that can have potentially damaging effects when applied to art. Comparing yourself to another artist can have a negative impact on your confidence, which can be a huge obstacle for growth.

Everyone develops their skills at their own pace and at their own level. Stay focused on the progress you make and the skills you develop in your own artwork, rather than comparing yourself to the achievements of others. It is normal to be inspired by the works of peers, instructors and well-known artists, but it should never be the primary source of motivation.

Fill your heart and mind with positive energy and focus on the things that motivate you to further your skills and bring more creativity to the world of art.

13. Don’t Forget to Appreciate Your Work

Art can be an incredibly personal and intimate form of expression, and also a challenging field to break through. It is understandable if your artwork does not always turn out as planned, but it is important to give yourself credit for the effort you put into class projects and self-initiated artwork.

Always make sure you take a moment to appreciate and reflect on your work. Even if it is not perfect or the results are not what you wanted, you can learn and grow from the experience. Negative feedback or failure should not be seen as a sign to give up, but rather a signal to try again and do better.


Art classes provide a safe and creative atmosphere where students can learn and express themselves. In order to make the most of your time in art class, it is important to keep in mind all of the things that should not be done in the art classroom.

Things like coming unprepared, rushing projects, copying other artists, relying solely on technology, and more should always be avoided. By following these helpful tips, you can create more meaningful art projects, and become a better artist. Remember, mistakes are part of the journey, and it is a sign of strength and growth when you can rise above the challenge and create something that you can be proud of.

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