So apparently in the Sunday Times, a recent survey showed that 71% of the people they surveyed deemed ‘artists’ as the top non-essential job.
Ok, let’s evaluate this…
Now let’s assume that this was a fair representative audience that they surveyed with a variety of ages, genders and backgrounds.
If you’ve ever thought of artists of any variety as being unskilled and having unnecessary jobs, then I want to ask you a question and I’d like you to answer honestly.
During lockdown, how have you been keeping yourself sane and happy?
Have you been watching Netflix, binging television series and watching movies to pass the time? Have you been reading books or magazines? Have you been listening to music? Have you been watching the news for your regular updates on what’s going on in the world?
Have you been playing youtube videos on your iPad to keep your child occupied while you work from home? Have you been listening to podcasts? Have you redecorated your home with new wallpaper, patterned bedsheets, framed artwork or been using Pinterest for your inspiration?
When the world starts up again, what are you most excited for? Listening to live music or going to gigs? Is there a film you’re dying to see at the cinema or are you looking forward to theatres being open again? Do you enjoy admiring artwork and photography or going to museums?
If you have used any of these things during this trying time, then you have deemed these outlets as necessary. You would have likely been miserable without these outlets for your wellbeing, so, therefore, they would likely be classed as ‘essential’ elements in your life for nurturing your happiness.
Just because a job sounds fun doesn’t mean that it isn’t hard work or that it doesn’t require skill, talent and continuous training. And just because something brings you joy doesn’t mean that it isn’t essential. Your wellbeing, happiness and mental health is just as important as your physical health.
Just putting it out there, this very image wouldn’t have been possible without an artist drawing it.
And just a reminder that when you are judging people for their ‘non-essential job’, just remember that sometimes there are ways that people contribute to society and people’s health and wellbeing in ways that you don’t even realise are making an impact.
Stop your snobbery and respect everyone.