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Yes! Depends though on how you define " an artist?" A gifted and talented
art teacher (for my definition) is an artist except the medium is different
than the traditional Fine Art materials that we are used to. Teaching is
so much more than craft. It is being able to communicate a passion, inspire
awe and wonderment, and being able to connect questions into meaningful
dialogue. Yes, an art teacher has to be passionate about the subject but
whether he or she needs to be an extraordinary creator with given materials is
not as important as being able to coach students in the skills, techniques,
materials, thinking process, and assessment procedures to judge and
discriminate. It is wonderful when a fine artist and teacher unite in one
body, but being a good artist does not make one a good teacher, nor does good
teaching make one a good fine artist. As high school teachers we are always
given teaching assignments outside our area of expertise. My mediums are
photography and pottery, but I don't feel any less a teacher when teaching
painting, drawing or sculpture though my skills in those areas are less
advanced than photography and pottery.
To throw more confusion into the question, how do you define what an "artist"
Perhaps we are all artists but some of us just haven't tapped into that
reservoir of talent in what ever form it may take. For some just the act of
teaching art is a creative statement and an art itself.