The Advantages and Disadvantages of Being an IB Art Student

Article by Alfonso Syquia

Photo by Maria Hernandez Pinto

The IB Diploma Programme offers a variety of subjects to its students. Visual Arts is a course that allows its students to express themselves and their creativity to the student body. Just like any other IB subject, the course comes with a multitude of advantages and disadvantages.

Many of the students who decide to take IB Art do so due to their passion for the subject. In fact, senior Nicole B states, “I took IB art because I have always had a passion for the visual arts since I was a toddler. I also thought that it would help me develop my skills and prep me for the future, since I aspire to become a fashion designer.” Moreover, senior Ayaka T simply says, “I took art because I love it and thought it would help me relieve some stress from my other IB classes.”

Credit to Emiri Katakawa

However, being passionate about something means being able to put in a lot of time into it. Both IB Art students revealed that the course is very time consuming, so it is difficult to balance regular school work with creating art pieces. Nicole adds, “Since art is subjective, teachers or critics may view your art as too simple, too cliché, or simply not as high quality as it should be.”

In contrast, there’s no doubt that taking IB Art is extremely beneficial as well. Both students were quick to bring up a multiple advantages of taking the subject.

“You are able to go at your own pace and there’s a lot of freedom of expression since art is meant to have no limits.” Nicole says.

“The most notable advantage in my opinion is the fact that taking art means I have one less exam to take in May. Art is meant for freedom of expression and taking the subject gives me a platform to do so without compromising my ability to focus equally on other classes.” Ayaka says.

All in all, it is clear that taking IB art comes with a myriad of advantages and disadvantages. Just like the other group six subjects, there are preconceived notions that the course is not as hard as

‘Traditional’ core subjects, but this is not the case. If you eventually decide to take IB art, make sure that your passion for the arts is enough to fuel you to work for hours on end producing artworks.