explored the possibilities . . . art, life, love . . . in three words
Monday, March 23, 2009
. . . answered third question
Yesterday I tried to answer Leslie Miller's first question for artists. I'm skipping her second question because I have to think about it more. However, her third question is: "What gets in the way and frustrates you in your efforts to create?"
For me, the biggest obstacle to creating is my own inner critic, which is very harsh and unforgiving. It's that voice in my mind telling me I'm a fraud, that what I do is no good. It's the voice that discounts all compliments of my work, telling me that people are just being nice, or that they don't really know what they're talking about. It's the critic in me that parses every comment on my work, choosing to ignore all the good things and magnify all the bad. It's the critic in me that even takes the lack of comment as a personal slap in the face.
And the biggest step I have taken to overcome this inner critic is this blog. On this blog, I post everything: the good, the bad, the experiments, what I have learned and what I want to learn. Nothing terrible has happened as a result of this . . . no one has told me to stop posing as an artist. No one has taken away my paint and canvases and said, "You can't paint." So I soldier on, keep trying, keep learning, keep posting. I can't silence the inner critic, but I can try to put it into perspective.
I am fortunate to be at a point in my life where I really don't have many obligations or demands on my time from outside sources. Unlike many artists, I don't have children to care for, nor do I have a career or job other than making art. Sometimes fatigue is an obstacle to creating; sometimes there is just no inspiration, although I think that is a big excuse, because there is inspiration all around if I just choose to see it. Sometimes personal problems or other everyday concerns obscure my abililty to see artfully. And sometimes the mere fact that someone wants to sell my art is daunting. So instead of going with my instinct, I will take the easier route and just make something I think will sell, instead of something that I want to make, and that never, ever works out.
Studying all different kinds of art on the internet and in person has taught me that no matter what I create, some will love it and some will hate it and a lot of people won't care, and it doesn't really matter because I'm doing what I love.