Art for Art's Sake vs Functional Art
And there was a Knittyboard discussion about altered books. In essence, one takes a book and uses the pages like a scrapbook. It's not a scrapbook per se, which contains photos and mementos, nor is it any longer a readable book. It has become an objet d'art.
Is it only the process that is important in art? Artists and crafters do what they do (what we do) as a form of self-expression. Art is a way of working through personal issues, expressing our personalities, among other things. And for some of us, we can't imagine our lives without some form of creative outlet.
But I've discovered that I prefer functional art. I like to look at paintings, but I have no interest in painting one. In the same way I like to do embroidery, but on functional things like garments or bags, or even shoes. Wall hangings or pictures leave me feeling empty when I'm done. Unless I'm giving them as a gift or making them for sale, which apparently in my mind gives them a purpose.
I like to sketch and draw, not just for the sake of drawing, but because I'm planning out something in another medium that I need to visualize first. I don't enjoy sitting down to draw a bowl of fruit or rough out a sketch of one of the kids, but I won't hesitate to draw a quick picture of a sweater as I see it in my head.
I like to knit and crochet, but I prefer to make items that will have some usefulness and be nice to look at as well. I like to see my sweaters walking around, or my mittens and socks keeping hands and feet warm in the snow. A pretty pineapple doily under a glass pitcher protecting an antique table from scratches is art to me.
I cannot fathom knitting a motorcycle.