Friday, 3 February 2017

I don't like everything I make!

Last night I sat down for a full 3 hours of dedicated making time and achieved next to nothing.

I had spent the last week doodling and writing down ideas for some new prints and wishing I just had a little more time to get cracking. Finally, an evening revealed itself in which I could sit down and release some of these artistic impulses and of course nothing happened. All of a sudden my head was free of ideas and any I had drawn in my sketchbook didn't make any sense to me any more. I attempted work on two new prints and abandoned them with a sulk and an audible sigh.

Now it's the following morning, my head is clearer and so here are five of things things that I have realised:

  1. You won't like everything you make. This seems like an obvious one but when you've been waiting for a moment to work on something it can be infuriating when those eventual moments produce nothing worthwhile.
  2. Working with other people around you can be a bad idea. If you're one of those people who work best in a creative environment filled with other people, bouncing ideas off one another then I salute you. I find that when others are around I am less likely to try something that may not work and am more likely to get frustrated at a drawing or a print and quickly shove it under a book for fear of someone noticing that I had made something unsuccessful.
  3. You HAVE TO PRACTICE. I've always liked drawing and I used to be good at it. I like to think that I still have the potential to be really good but I've been naive (and arrogant) enough to think that I can just pick up a pencil after months of drawing nothing and produce a masterpiece. I have a sketchbook from about 2008 and in it are some of the best drawings I have ever done. This book was made before and during the time I was studying architecture and drawing every day. I have realised that to be able to draw like that again I will need to work hard again to get back to that stage and only then can I get better. Don't try to draw hands after not drawing for six months.
  4. Being talented takes hard work. Right now I am neither working hard nor talented but I'm trying to change that.
  5. Try again tomorrow. Or the day after that...

In the end I made a little print of my sister and brother-in-law's new house to give to them as a present so the whole evening wasn't completely wasted. Pictured below: tiny drypoint etching, 'old house, new home'.


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