Not Fine Art…But Fun Art

One of the art clubs I belong to is a “fine arts” club. It’s in the club name. We are a “fine arts” association, and from time to time there is a bit of discussion on what is and what is not considered fine art. 

“We can’t get too crafty,” one club member remarked recently when the topic of art shows and displays came up. “We’re supposed to present fine arts to the community,” she reminded us.

I love fine arts — however we want to define them — and I hope someday to be considered a fine artist in my landscape painting. I’m learning now, though, that not all art must be fine art. Sometimes it’s good to create fun art instead.

Lately my drawing practice has centered around cartoon drawings and simple illustrations. Rather than realism, I’m going for entertainment, amusement, and enjoyment. Creating cartoon-figures gives me a chance to play with lines and colors, reducing characters to basic shapes, and finding little ways to add personality to my drawings.

I first began this with my doodle monsters from Inktober, which led to the unintentional creation of a very dysfunctional family. Now, I’m moving on to cartoon animals — drawings that will be so much fun to share with our grandchildren.

Cartoon drawings typically tell stories, and in time, maybe these creatures will have a few tall tales to share. I don’t know what I’ll do with them, but here are a few characters who have come from my Sharpies:


Being a “lizard lover”, I think Izzard — who resembles an alligator more than a lizard — is probably my favorite. All of these cartoon characters represent fun starting points for me. I’ll have to give them bodies, give them houses to live in, dress them up in colorful clothes, give them places to go and things to do.

Although becoming a cartoonist isn’t in my plans, I am sure it will be fun to sit down with the grandkids and let them suggest ideas for these characters. Art can be — and should be — fun, especially when we share it with the children in our lives.


  1. it is always fun to mix disciplines. It helps you discover other sides of drawing and keeps you out of the creative rut. That is why my disciplines are mixed too. Cartoons, urban sketches, and simply drawings or reference paintings/sketches. They all add experience to my work on all areas.

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    1. I feel that way, too, especially since I’m still fairly new to drawing. Every new thing adds a bit to my knowledge. I’d like to think that even some of the simplest drawings — like my little cartoon characters — will help me improve overall. Thanks so much for visiting the blog and sharing your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL… don’t get me started on that! I’ve been reading about “what is art” in today’s world, and a lot of it is a bit upsetting. I have a post about it that’s scheduled for Tuesday. Be sure to check it out and give me your thoughts! 🙂

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  2. “Fine art” can be awful snobby sometimes. Give me real, true expressions of creativity from the heart and soul and I don’t feel it matters how great the skill is. I hate it when artists look down on crafters anyhow. Crafters are some amazing artists in their own right!

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  3. No objection to your ‘fun art’ at all. It would be a dull world were there no fun. For me, I explained my definition of ‘fine art’ here – particularly the bit: “intellectually I feel my job is to challenge, upset and question; emotionally, to inspire, engage and ultimately uplift through the medium of oil paint and marks.”
    To sum up, for me, fine art relies on the classical, just as in music: something that has stood the test of time. The arts generally are the only area of human life in which we can be HONEST with no fear or thought of politics or commerce etc.
    Hope this is not too heavy for a Monday morning! x

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    1. Thanks for visiting my blog. I enjoyed reading your thoughts about “fine art” — and definitely not too heavy for a Monday morning. I do hope you’ll visit again on Tuesday because I have a post that discusses a few philosophical ideas about art in our world today. For me, it’s a somewhat disturbing look at the present state of “fine art”, so I would be quite interested in knowing your thoughts on the ideas I’ll be sharing. You’ve touched a bit on some of the thoughts — that art (intellectually, at least) may be intended to challenge, upset, and question. Of course, there is much to think about in regards to art and what it is (as well as what it is not) and we each approach art from a unique perspective, don’t you think? I think, too, that our appreciation for various art forms may change from time to time. I look forward to exchanging more thoughts with you on the fascinating subject of art.


      1. I’ll definitely look later this week for follow-up. All your remarks make sense to me. Always more than happy to chat and share ideas. I’ve always seen my paintings as a vehicle for exactly that, and if they’re not seen they get no oxygen of life: they need to be breathed on!

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      2. It gets interesting when art and philosophy collide, and I definitely have a lot of mixed feelings. You are right. Art needs to be “breathed on”. I like that thought.


  4. The sketches are not loading for me for some reason, but it’s funny how you want to create houses for them, dress them up, and give them things to do. I wish I could see the sketches, I only see the top one “izzard the lizard”.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So sorry the sketches weren’t loading. Yes, I want to learn to do a little more with my cartoon sketches. I think seeing them as “real characters” will give me many opportunities to improve my drawing skills.


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