Photo by Evelyn Vaseff
Photo by Evelyn Vaseff

Written by Hannah Twery, contributor

Sometimes being an artist is hard and it sucks. Sometimes being in a relationship is hard and it sucks. So being an artist in a relationship with another artist sounds like an awful time, right? It’s not, I promise. It’s actually really awesome.

My boyfriend and I have been dating for almost five years. He graduated from SCAD with a degree in graphic design in 2011 and I’m about to graduate with a degree in writing soon. We have no idea about the intricacies of what each other does. I have no idea why it takes him half an hour to adjust a font and he has no idea how to write a memoir piece in the form of a grocery shopping list. But it works because we genuinely care about each other’s respective art, even if we don’t fully understand it.

We talk about what he’s doing as far as new designs go and he explains why some design on a billboard is interesting or why it’s awful. We talk about the books I’m reading and my writing workshop pieces. Because of each other, we know far more about the other’s craft than we would have if we weren’t together. We don’t compete with each other or put down each other’s work or roll our eyes when the other goes on a tangent about something involving their craft as artists so often do.

Most people assume artists have to be with someone who will balance them out like a painter with a stock broker. Being an artist in a relationship with another artist isn’t a risky move. In fact, it can be beautiful. Some really cool stuff can come out of it. There’s nothing wrong with being a banker, but isn’t it more fun to share your life with someone who’s creative too? The key here is to respect each other’s art, even if you don’t understand it. Try and learn about it, don’t compete with each other, and always remember they might offer some interesting insight about whatever you’re working on. Plus, if you move in with each other, your decorating skills sans the imminent mess will most likely be on-point.