I quite often see successful, popular, busy, amazing artists posting statuses on social media saying things like “everyone should be more positive. I hate it when an artist puts themselves down. You’ll all make it eventually” and I used to get mad because they could easily say that, they had made it already. Part of me still thinks that. If what they were saying was true, why didn’t some less successful, struggling artists say the same thing? Surely some of them would agree. I realized today that those struggling artists are all too busy trying to produce art and trying to motivate themselves. Only when you climb to the top of the mountain can you stop to take in the view and see how far you have come. Struggling artists haven’t had the mental breathing room or that “aha!” moment of realizing they are worth something. So I decided to be that someone, that anomaly.
My art is crappy. I’ve recently accepted that my doodles are the best I’m going to do and I’m happy with it. Even tho it’s incredibly easy and simple, no one else does quite the same thing. It’s mine. So I’m proud of it and I’m going to say to all the artists: just imagine how brilliant the world would be and how much we would accomplish if everyone was supportive of everyone else’s work. Forget jealously, forget your own progress, look at an artist’s work objectively and tell them the good and the bad of it constructively. They can take that criticism and improve, and if they can’t take that criticism, don’t be offended, they just have to overcome their sense of vulnerability, putting their heart’s work out into the world.
Everything an artist does is useful. Every failure is a lesson learned, every exercise and job is practice. All you have to do is put in the time, and if you don’t, you might get bitter, but you have to accept that it’s your own fault. That’s hard. I know because that is my main problem. Just don’t add stress to your worries by comparing your progress to another artist’s. Everyone works and learns at a different pace. Just do something and you will improve. The more you do, the more you improve and the faster you do it. Simple!
Now get to it!
If you need more encouragement I’m always open to discussion and I will be posting more random pieces of encouragement here and on Twitter. I’m fed up of being negative. No matter my own progress, I can help others. Now come here and let me give you a hug.