In the Eyes of the Artist
Being an artist in the public eye is a scary thing. Everyone has their own opinion, and it can be nerve-racking wondering what people are thinking about a particular piece. It can put me in a vulnerable position, no doubt.
I love being creative and bringing my ideas to life, but the thought of someone saying, "that's stupid", "this looks cheaply made", or the dreaded, "oh, I can make that" is definitely unnerving and depressing. Many people have similar talents, but no two creative minds are exactly alike. Sure, we can get inspiration from anywhere, including from other artists. But to hear someone diminish my work in any way, makes me feel like what I'm creating just isn't good enough. It can be really defeating.
Don't get me wrong - I have totally been inspired by other artists' pieces in galleries and at craft shows. I simply take that inspiration, make it into my own piece, and put my own creative twist on something completely new. But I would never actually say that I could make something better than another artist. Everyone has their own way of creating, and you never know who may be listening. It's kind of a bummer for the artist to hear.
I know it's absolutely impossible to please everyone, as each individual has his or her own taste. That's hard for me to swallow, as I'm a big people pleaser. But if someone happens to find one of my pieces ugly or cheap looking, there's nothing I can do to change his or her mind. I can describe my process of how the piece was created and my inspiration behind it. That may make a difference once it is realized what goes into making the final product.
Ultimately, everyone has their own style and opinion. And that's okay.
One thing, for sure, this journey has taught me is that it's important to develop a thick skin. I think I am getting there. It's still hard to hear any negative thoughts regarding my artwork, but I know that it's not about me. It's about that person's taste. Their negative thought is not directed at me. It's not personal. They don't dislike me, they just dislike my piece!
There could be a beautiful, million-dollar piece of artwork that looks as if a first grader whipped his paintbrush at a blank canvas over and over again during art class. Ninety-nine people could think it's the most stunning piece they have ever seen, and one person may say that it looks hideous. Would that artist give up and be defeated over that one person's opinion? No way.
We all have our own definition of exquisiteness, and I embrace that now. That's art. That is what makes the world beautiful.