For aspiring artists, the prospect of art school can be daunting.  It’s competitive, it’s expensive – but when you get past that, it can be one of the most life-altering experiences for an artist.

You get special opportunities, you make countless connections (socially and professionally), and you’ll learn about all aspects of art – you’ll get a well-rounded education, including art history, various forms of studio art, and design.  Interested in art school?  Read on:

A competitive edge

In the art world, people sometimes assume no degree is needed for success.  That’s not to say it’s advisable – stardom, though tied to talent, almost has more to do with winning the metaphorical lottery.  For most of us, it’s simply not going to happen.

A bachelors’ degree in fine arts (or, even better a BFA) will definitely give you a leg up.  As each generation becomes increasingly educated, a college degree is quickly becoming vital.  Now, an undergraduate degree is almost the status quo; masters’ degrees, too, have recently become much more popularized.

Make connections

In art school, you’ll be taking classes with who will presumably be the future leaders in the field -you could be making the connections of a lifetime.

And more than in the strictly practical sense, there’s something wonderful about being thrown together with a group of artistic young people -that’s a breeding ground (in the figurative and literal sense) for creativity.  You’ll be inspired by your peers and instructors, and be pushed to create even better and higher quality work.

And let’s not forget the fact that prestigious art schools are also often visited by art dealers looking for the next hot thing.  Plus, students are also afforded opportunities like public gallery shows.  While employment is by no means guaranteed, you’ll get once-in-a-lifetime networking and professional opportunities.

Build a portfolio

For many, art school is an important step in building up a respectable portfolio.  Art school gives you more than just experience: when else will you have a four-year block of time set aside exclusively for you to create?  It’s an artist’s dream come true; it’s an opportunity and experience not to be missed.

And think of it as a way to incubate your talent: an education in the art will give you the chance to explore mediums and techniques you may never have tried on your own.  Maybe you’ll go in as an oil painter and come out a mixed-media sculptor – or maybe you’ll find that you’re actually an extremely talented typographer.

There are lots of reasons to go to art school – be it to learn the top interior design tips or to become the next Picasso: the possibilities are endless. Art school is not a means to an end – it’s one of those situations where the quote-unquote “journey” is the most important part of all.

Albeit rather corny, it’s true: art school is an experience that you won’t regret.

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