Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tutus + Creative Frustration & Feeling Lost

Steps To Take To Keep Feeling Creatively Frustrated & Perhaps A Bit Lost
1. Worry and wonder about the shape of human heads. Focus only on that. And then get it too big anyway.
2. Break your pencils to teach them a lesson. They are failing you and should be punished.
3. Draw legless sad girl with a convenient tutu to throw off the viewer. He/she will never know you just couldn’t for the (flipping) life of you get the legs right + that’s what cropping is for anyway... (see example above)
4. Fret (continuously and nonstop) about where exactly your style fits. And then when you sit down to draw have nothing productive come out for days. Definitely try staying up til 2 am to force something good out. Extreme exhaustion fuels the soul.
5. Listen and agree with phrases like “Nobody actually paints anymore” and “Yours is a lost art”.
6. Cry, lament and wring your hands because as much as you wish you could (draw, paint, etc) like (your hero/es) you can’t. And you never will.
7. Tell yourself you should be: further ahead, where so and so is, accomplished at -fill in the blank-, able to leap tall buildings with a single paintbrush. Simultaneously look up successful people with kleenex scotched taped under your eyeballs to keep your hands free for more google searches of more successful people.

As much as I'd like to wallow in the awesomeness that is the above (sigh), I suppose I must come up with....The Antidote.
           To Combat Creative Frustration + Feeling A Bit Lost
1. Show up. Tape your pencils back together and keep going.
2. Step away. (haha, look how I contradicted myself there. #1Show up...#2Step away) Even if it's for several needed breaks.
3. You are not Them. They are not You.The world is a big place with room for everyone. There's a place for your art/what you create.
4. Carefully peel away the scotchtape from under your eyeballs. Use any leftover kleenex to catch resulting tears.
5. Forgive yourself for not being the Wonderfully Magical Magic Person Who Has It Creatively (& Otherwise) All Together and accept the person you are. You'll grow.
6. Accept you are where you are right now, even if you need to be elsewhere. Remind yourself you aren't where you were. And that's what counts the most.

~There. Now doesn't that feel better?


Kristy Guenther said...

Great post! These are things I have to constantly remind myself of. Nice to know I'm not alone.

June said...

Oh Christine... This is a wonderful honest post. If I were closer, I would rush over and give you a hug for being the creative YOU that you are.

Be assured that everyone feels like this on occasions. I am always struggling, and feel pretty sure I will never get any better at this job! But somehow we do continue to develop... look back at what you have done before and you will see the growth. Nothing comes easy - it all takes work and more work to move forward one step at a time, but even the rubbish stuff helps us to grow.

Your tutu girl without legs reminded me of newsreaders who always used to be viewed on TV as sat behind desks - so people wondered if they had legs, or what they wore below waist level! :o)

Your artwork certainly fits a desirable niche. You are developing your own signature style that is irrefutably your work and no one else’s. That is as it should be. You will never draw/paint/create work like your heroes because you are YOU, not them, and you bring to your work all your own experiences and feelings - not theirs.

Pick yourself up, dry your eyes with that Kleenex, go for a well deserved day out and look at other lovely things to inspire you. Stop fretting, and energise.
Your use of traditional watercolours to create is not out of date... it is all scanned into digital eventually - you just start with a different media than digital artists. But yours will last beyond their digital files, and can be shared in exhibitions as actual artwork, or passed on to family many years from now. As fewer illustrators will work in traditional mediums there will be less physical artwork to exhibit.
Yours is a skill that you can build on with added digital enhancements, and you have learnt so much with Photoshop already.... it is all there waiting for you when you are ready, if you want to use it.
Don’t fret about things you haven’t reached yet, embrace what you have achieved, keep working to move forward and good things will come to surprise you.

Kim Siebold Studios said...

I am laughing so hard reading this that I am actually crying! ALL of it was so true!