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drawingspirits
01-08-2003, 09:23 PM
hello folks..I am pretty new here,tried a couple of times to introduce myself but don't know if it ever made to the board..I have been addicted here for quite awhile,and read most new forums..I've even gotten a few people joined up here.one even became a guide..sigh...here is my problem, I don't know what is 'wrong' with me these days, I just started drawing one day last january and never stopped,(an ad at our local art gallery for survivors of sexual abuse to submit artwork started all this, I wondered what my experiences might look like so I drew some stuff)..since then I have drawn and painted and learned and so on..I have a site with my stuff (some of it ..) my link is on profile, people have said kind things about it all. as I said something is wrong now. I come here ,I see so much talent, newcomers say "this is the first thing i ever did." and I am blown away..it seems I am very critical of every thing I do now..I think the worst of it..they've been like my babies til now,always proud of my efforts, but not now and it breaks my heart,I think I am not good enough to waste the paint...what has happened to me? Is this common? what do I do to stop it?It is really bothering me.

madster
01-08-2003, 09:46 PM
Hello, drawingspirits!

I read once that most people are more afraid of success than of failure.

My Most Beloved has a phrase: "Work it through, get over yourself, and move on..."

Perhaps you are letting self-doubt and insecurity (which is NOT a result of your past!) hinder you.

What's done is done. What you've made, you've made. Why try to go back and doubt the past?

Move on!
If nothing else, stop looking back, and focus on the wide open path ahead of you!!!!

If your past works "suck," so be it. Why should that influence where you are NOW????

Move onwards, and upwards....the universe awaits.

With Love and Best wishes,
Madeline

Rose Queen
01-08-2003, 10:41 PM
Originally posted by drawingspirits
an ad at our local art gallery for survivors of sexual abuse to submit artwork started all this, I wondered what my experiences might look like so I drew some stuff)..since then I have drawn and painted and learned and so on. Now, I come here, I see so much talent, newcomers say "this is the first thing i ever did." and I am blown away. I think I am not good enough to waste the paint...what has happened to me? Is this common? what do I do to stop it?It is really bothering me.

It sounds to me like a couple of things might be at play here, not least of which is the result of exploring your sexual abuse; perhaps it has just started to catch up with you and you need another means of dealing with it, such as therapy or some long heart-to-hearts with good and caring friends. It may also be that you are clinically depressed and just not aware of it, which is more often the case than not. Again, something a good therapist and taking care of yourself can address.

However, I also think all artists go through this to some extent or other. I am often discouraged by the work people post as their "first," but I think by 'first' they mean that they have spent a lot of time learning the techniques and methodologies and that what they mean is that it's the first thing they've done that they consider actual art.

Whether that's true or not, however, isn't so important as that you stop comparing yourself with others. Perhaps you can't do what a particular other artist can, but remember that they can't do some things you can do, either. And nothing you do is a 'waste of paint,' either; even if a piece doesn't live up to your expectations, painting it pushes you that much further down the path to becoming the artist you want to be. I prefer to think that you are just plateaued for the moment and that if you let it be, your energy and zest for creation will return. In the meantime, I would suggest you borrow a copy of The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron from your local library and read it through. I bet you will find in it much that resonates with you!



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Shehaub
01-09-2003, 08:35 AM
Drawingspirits, I can very much relate to what you have said. I often look at some of the "firsts" that get posted and go into shock. There are a couple things to remember when that happens, that helps me out a lot. In "The Natural Way to Draw", by Nicolaides, he says something to the effect of: The sooner you get drawing the sooner you get the first 5000 mistakes out of the way. The other thing that I always try to keep in mind is that although I too, have had some pretty good successes, I have immediately turned around and flopped something. From what I read, this happens to everyone.

I learned in a class called "Healing the child within" that progress is not usually a diagnal line like this / it is usually a spiral going upwards. This doesn't just apply to inner healing. I have discovered, in my life, that it also applies to art, goal setting, personal relationships and lots of other things.

Whether that's true or not, however, isn't so important as that you stop comparing yourself with others.
Exactly! I think Rosequeen has said something here that every artist needs to hear at some point.

I really need to go ahead and just order my copy of the Artists Way. The more I hear about the book, the more interesting it sounds. I think Amazon has it for under $10.

drawingspirits
01-09-2003, 08:36 AM
thankyou for your responses ladies...when I included the part about the abuse it was only to say how painting began for me,it was a very long time ago that I lived that life and had many years therapy and worked after that with survivors ..it doesn't feel it has any power in my life anymore..I live with someone who has been unable to work for several months now due to clinical severe depression,maybe that has worn me thin..(hmm?)I want to be a better artist. I am unable to go to school right now so I am learning in every way possible via computer and books,but I think I have somehow just lost the ability to be happy where I am at right now and to see the beauty in what I do create....Maybe the book suggested will do it....I will look for it.again thank you very much .

Rose Queen
01-09-2003, 01:32 PM
Drawingspirits, if you are living with someone in the throes of serious clinical depression, I don't wonder at your feeling that you can't experience happiness. It's very draining to be the only functioning member of a relationship. I wish I knew what to advise, but everything I think of sounds too glib.

Originally posted by Shehaub I really need to go ahead and just order my copy of the Artists Way. The more I hear about the book, the more interesting it sounds. I think Amazon has it for under $10.

Because a lot of people buy the book and then find they really can't work through it, you can also often find it in used bookstores and at the used book sites online for less than Amazon. My favorite is http://dogbert.abebooks.com/, but there are many others.



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drawingspirits
01-09-2003, 06:34 PM
Rosequeen just to feel the positive energy you send is very encouraging thank you very much! no local bookstore has the book yet but i will check out that site! hugs n thankx! irene

timelady
01-12-2003, 01:32 PM
Irene - I had a look at your website. You have nothing to criticise yourself about! I think your work is fantasic - a definite strong graphic and folk art feel to it. The whole collection of work is very cohesive and has it's own personality (yours!) - consistency is a sign of maturity in art.

I definitely recommend the Artist's Way too. Above all, allow yourself to accept whatever you feel about yourself and your work. Slow down if you need to, stop if you need to. Paint voraciously if you need to and do it for yourself. :) All artists have to stand in front of each canvas and paint for themselves. Buyers don't buy one artist's work because it's better than the one next to it. They buy a painting because the artist (you!) has expressed something wonderful from yourself that they identify with and love.

Tina.

bikevstar
01-12-2003, 06:02 PM
I know how you feel. I'm new to this forum too. I've looked at all the creative, wonderful pieces and thought to myself "as if I'll ever post anything here!". I don't need to be the best but I do need to feel like I deserve to be in people's company. I don't know if I'm saying this right?! What I mean is all the amazing art on this site has excited me but at the same time has stopped me cold! I am afraid of the canvas now. This forum has had a positive and negative effect on me. The people are helpful, caring, amazing artists and I've gained so much info and excitement but now I feel like I'm inferior. Isn't that wierd!? I truly thought I'd paint my @#* off! Complete opposite effect! I do have to find a way to get over it or all I'll be is a wannabe artist. Who's to say...maybe we both are better than we think. I'm certainly not afraid of success but I am afraid of failure. Art is the one thing that I've had all these years and getting back into it has been hard. I figure I'll just have to wait it out. Good luck to you and email me if you need to talk. Maybe I should take my signature to heart, eh? (sorry, had to do the Canadian thing)

Kelly

drawingspirits
01-12-2003, 09:51 PM
Timelady thankyou so much for looking and your very kind comments ,it helps very much to know you took the time to see my works...you have greatly encouraged me! Bikevstar You hit the nail exactly on the head with your comments!..It was very bewildering to start feeling this way about being here.I mean I luvvvvvv Wetcanvas,then poof this inferiority thing happened and it is very good to know it happens to others too. hopefully I will post something here soon and bite the bullet and see what happens...(gulp,gotta admit it scares me to pieces to think of doing it though!)...wheweee. I will email you soon and thanks for responding ,hang tough we'll be okay!!

bikevstar
01-12-2003, 10:31 PM
Hey,

I'm going to try and attack that canvas tonight! I can't promise I'll post anything (that's my next fear to conquer!). You probably won't believe this but you gave me some confidence too. I finally have talked to someone else who feels like I do. Because this is an open forum I won't go into details...let's just say I know all about depression. Not that it makes your situation any better to hear that. I just wanted you to know that I understand where you're at or what you're dealing with to some degree. Please try and find your creative energy, I saw your work just awhile ago and you shouldn't quit. It's good and it'll only get better! I just ordered that book that seems to be good for the creative soul, called The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. Let's hope it helps.

Good luck (to both of us). Kelly

P.S. When you think of it, nobody will probably ever get to meet either one of us, so what the @*#$ are we both so afraid of?

oleCC
01-13-2003, 09:28 AM
Irene... Your situation is quite familiar to me. I have not personally had to go thru that but do have several students who have. They got so discouraged when viewing the artwork by other "beginners" - but once they quit "comparing" they were able to move on! Today those same students are displaying their works in my gallery and while the styles and interpetations vary widely - they are expressions of each individual....and they don't expect to please just everybody.
You already have your own style...some folks search and search for that!! Please do post your work and I believe it will help you tremendously :clap: OK????
Carol

drawingspirits
01-13-2003, 11:06 AM
hello! geesh i dunno where to begin to say how you all are helping soooo much! thank you!!:D thanks for looking at my stuff bikevstar(kelly), I am glad you are gonna get back at it,that in itself is a wonderful thing to know! hehe whatcha said about no one ever getting to meet either of us did make me smile though...I have 3 really good artist friends I met at first online,then in person, one became a guide here, I am proud to know them all, we had lunch not too long ago and plan to soon again,it was wonderful! the funny part is 2 of them are from toronto area (maybe neighbors to ya!)since then I have met other artists in this area who I hope will join the next lunch...yesterday I saw one fella in one of the forums lives right here in my own town. It truly is a small world and people do find each other when they need each other...I am always astounded by fate! Olecc (carol) thankkkkkkyou so much!!!!! to say i have found my style makes me want to dig deeper and see what is there.....you made me want to jump upndown! thanks a ton everybody!!!!!

rd2ruin
01-13-2003, 12:52 PM
I'm very new to WC, and I have to admit I was also awed by many of the posts here. But once I came down to earth, realized I was a toddler in the field and got over myself, I started to get inspired by the same posts that intimidated me.

I liken it to my music. You dont have to be John Williams to produce beautiful guitar songs. I started playing slack key, and remember this quote from Keola Beamer whenever I start to get frustrated at my progress:

"To practice ha'aha'a [humility], try turning down the volume of your [own] story. Tomorrow morning at the very first moment you wake up, don't rush to make the coffee, don't bolt out of bed. Stay quiet for awhile. Try to still the surface waters of your mind."

Once I can clear my mind and accept that this might just be the best I'll ever be, than I work with what I have. More often than not, I find that my music and drawings come through me, instead of from me, even though they are a part of me. Those are the times that I find out something about myself, and those things come out in the final product. Given A) or B), I'd much rather have a finished work that technically isn't perfect yet full of emotion than vice versa.

(that all made more sense in my mind before I wrote it .:rolleyes: )

You're stuff isn't technically perfect. Improving upon technical skills is something that is always good, but I think if you strive towards that as an end to your means, you just may find yourself losing that very something that makes your work impressive. Your work has the look of someone who is painting for themselves, which I think everyone wishes (at least I do) they could do better. You know, you can't learn that in a book.

As such, you'll always be your own worst critic.

Pilan
01-15-2003, 03:08 PM
hi drawing spirits,

we have all sucked before and some like me still suck. but I keep painting hoping that some people dont think I suck. and someday i will feel okay about sucking. :D

did you ever think that before everyone was so perfect and a master that they sucked too :evil:

its a sucky world :evil:

but, madeline is right, move on. but you can still remember it but dont let it hold you back.
feel the fire in your gut and let it burn!

have a great day and I really do have to go paint.

Pilan



Originally posted by madster
Hello, drawingspirits!

I read once that most people are more afraid of success than of failure.

My Most Beloved has a phrase: "Work it through, get over yourself, and move on..."

Perhaps you are letting self-doubt and insecurity (which is NOT a result of your past!) hinder you.

What's done is done. What you've made, you've made. Why try to go back and doubt the past?

Move on!
If nothing else, stop looking back, and focus on the wide open path ahead of you!!!!

If your past works "suck," so be it. Why should that influence where you are NOW????

Move onwards, and upwards....the universe awaits.

With Love and Best wishes,
Madeline

RobinZ
01-15-2003, 11:15 PM
My husband draws better than me. My SON paints better than me. I DON'T CARE!!! I do what I like to do! And I draw and paint in my own way.

My favorite quote is something like this: "If only the bird with the sweetest song were allowed to sing, the forest would be a silent place." There's room in all art forms for all us birdies.

baquitania
01-16-2003, 09:34 PM
Originally posted by drawingspirits
...I think I am not good enough to waste the paint...what has happened to me? Is this common? what do I do to stop it?It is really bothering me.

Wasting paint? Heck that's what it's there for... Just do it! *cue nike montage of Drawing Spirits using up all her paint and having 50 finished pieces a month later* Think of the alternative? Did you buy the paints to match your socks? No ofcourse not...

I once taught a class on finger painting to music, and those kids had no fear... they didn't care, they were in the moment, they wanted to have fun, and by golly they did... That's what you have to think when you create, it shouldn't be about judging yourself or what others might think, paint for you first, for what's inside you, then share it with someone, namely "us" :D

It is more than common to give up hope, then it is to be fearless, but if you let yourself stop yourself from something you enjoy and love, then not only do you deny yourself an outlet of your own individual experience (something none of us will ever get, since we are all "snowflakes") but you also deny yourself the simple pleasure of "what if"... What if should end in "I do something good!!!" or What if I do something great, wouldn't that be worth attempting?

Try and let your doubt and fear be your fuel to say, "Big Deal! I'm gonna pick up my paints, I'm gonna fill up my canvas, and I'm gonna express my thoughts and spirit..."

we are here for you... so go have some fun!

Bobby

drawingspirits
01-17-2003, 09:34 AM
omigosh You people are WONDERFULLLLLL!!!!!!!!! thank you thank you thank you .......:clap: hopefully I will post something in the next few days...getting good pictures is the hold up now (another story-geesh)but You all have made me feel fearless..You re adjusted my attitude so to speak and I very deeply appreciate all of you.

Winty
01-21-2003, 11:59 AM
I just LOVE happy endings! (And beginnings!) So glad to see all the WC crowd pitching in to pick each other off the floor from time to time!

It isn't always easy to remember that we are always most critical of our own work, and that others are eager to see something that is new and different.
Looking at one's own work day after day can get monotonous. Ever gone out in an old garment that you are sick and tired of, but it was the handiest thing, or something, and then someone gives you a big complement on how great it looks on you, and you want to come back with the "this old thing?" but you can't because then you insult their taste.
So you say thanks, then take another look at yourself in the mirror when you get home, and hey, it isn't half bad! To them it is new and fresh, and looks great. So we have to remember that we are judging our own work from looking at it day after day, and thinking, hey, this old thing! And to others, it may look new and exciting!

dd50
01-21-2003, 06:04 PM
Hi Irene,

WELCOME! :)

Sooooo how about you put some prices on those paintings, in case somebody might be interested.

I share much of your feelings .... I completely understand!

Big hugs!
Dee

drawingspirits
01-21-2003, 08:15 PM
Winty that was a wonderful way to think thank you very much!!! I shall remember that! dd50...:eek: omigosh i would have no idea of prices and you jsut blew my mind..thanks it felt Great!!!!!!!!I dream of the day I sell somethin....guess lots of folks do!!!! thanks allllllllll irene

Winty
01-21-2003, 09:14 PM
Awww, drawingspirits, this old thinking?

;) Thanks very much!