Competitive Art, and fear

I see call for artists quite often, but because I try to avoid measuring my art to someones else’s, or intentionally allowing something to have power over how I feel about my art and myself as an artist, I ignore them.. There are so many incredible artists in the world that for me being an artist and constantly being faced with how others see my art takes quite a bit of courage. My art is so personal, somethings I create no one else sees. But often in the art world you will here someone say don’t take it personally, when there is a negative response to someones art. I think the ability to do that is impossible. Its like someone calling your child ugly. The fact is expressive art is personal. Now of course how you process negative responses dictates a lot. I try not allow it to be more that a quick sting, like the pop of a rubber band. But dwelling on it and allowing it power can turn a negative comment into a wound.

Today I registered for 2 competitions. It took more strength to push enter and send images of my art through cyber space than I expected. There are a few things this week that I am hoping “my work is good enough” for. Allowing someone to decide if they want you is frightening. Mainly because I fear wayyyy down deep that maybe Im not awesome. Rejection can validate those fears. I have no idea how it would affect me. In highschool I entered contest all the time, my art teacher would enter my work in contest that I didnt even know about. I never gave it a second thought, I didnt have that fear. But I also could roller skate like a pro as a teen, now I’m petrified on a roller rink, I am one of those hold onto to the side moms. What happened? What makes you more afraid of pain, emotional or physical (the result of falling on your butt  at a skating rink) as an adult?. Experience should make you stronger right? Maybe experience teaches  us that falling is more painful than we expected.

I discourage any participant in my workshops or member on my site to subject their art to the scrutiny of being compared to other artists. We are all at different places in the creative journey. Someone farther along on the journey is going to have more powerful creative voice than someone who has just begun. That is  exactly what large competitions do. Hundreds of thousands of artist from everwhere have their work thrown together and compared. I have no clue how I measure up to other artists. I have never wanted to know. Im not sure I do now. Rejection is any form has been the achilles heel in my life. A rough childhood will do that to a person. I feel like I have shot a bunch of arrows in the air hoping none of them stick me in the butt. I feel their is a great appreciation for my work, but this is a whole other ball game.

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2 thoughts on “Competitive Art, and fear

  1. Pingback: Naked Blog by Trey Coppland .06. 11. 13. ART UPDATES

  2. Pingback: ART SCENE: ART LICENSING WITH MARIA BROPHY | Esquisser

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