Are you an artist or an artisan? Many people are very emotional about how their work is referred to and there are aspects of both for the talent we place at Artisan Creative. As a craftsperson as well as a creative myself, I have thought about it from both points of view.

An “artisan” is traditionally known as someone who uses creativity to make something useful. Ideally, those creations are also beautiful, show innovative design, and function exceptionally well. Are they making art?

An “artist,” on the other hand, creates for pure aesthetics, pure emotions, to make us feel, rather than use. Is art useful?

At their very best, both artists and artisans achieve the goals of the other. When we use a well-designed tool–whether it be a website, a piece of furniture or a skein of yarn–we recognize the beauty in it. We feel its rightness. We enjoy its aesthetic. We create through it for ourselves and others.

When we observe and interact with art, it inspires us to create, to innovate, to help others to feel. We also interact with each other differently, creating relationships based on our shared responses.

To me, artist and artisan are the same, when talent is used to its best potential. We use art to change ourselves and our relationships. We are inspired by using what artisans produce. There is beauty and purity in all good design.

Do you consider yourself an artist or an artisan? How do you define your work?

Wendy Stackhouse, for Artisan Creative