I was working on
organizing plundering through a couple of storage closets and ran across some canvasses that I had, obviously and at some point, stopped working on. I looked at them with fresh eyes and thought, “Yep. You were right to stop on these.” I’m smiling while I’m typing this because I know – deep down – that the reason I stopped working on those paintings is because I didn’t think they were perfect, or good enough. If a friend walked in the room at that moment, they probably would have disagreed.
We are our own worst critics
The truth is – artists are the most self-critical and insecure people I know. Well, they are for the most part. I tend to mull over a project too long and then pick it apart or, worse, compare it to someone else’s work. And I have to tell you, it’s a hard habit to break. But break it we must.
I think artists should have unjuried shows of their most self-criticized works. That would be a brave thing – to show what you think is not quite perfect, not quite good enough. The truth is, I would bet most of your work is amazing. Remember, you aren’t here to judge – you are here to create. And now I’m going to put those canvasses back on my work table and see what imperfect perfection I can come up with.
I urge you to do the same with any of your art that you have stuck in a closet or are reluctant to finish. If you do, take a photo and send it to me. I think I might just create a “perfectly imperfect” gallery and would love to see your work in it – along with mine, also!
Until then, go make what matters (even if you don’t think it’s perfect).