Saturday, 2 February 2008

Taking It Personally - Advice please ...

I'm really fed up today. Been working on the above painting of me (not looking my best!). My mum just saw it and said "I really don't like that. It's awful." So I'm sulking now and feeling quite disillusioned with the whole thing.

The trouble is that unless I'm doing a painting of a vase of flowers, kittens or something "nice" my mum hates it. I guess she is the main person who sees and comments on what I do, so I do take it quite personally when she says things like that.

I get her point that it is kind of awful in a way. Thats is what the painting is about.
To explain - I had just last week lost someone very close to me. I went into a kind of strange stage of shock for a few days where it really didn't sink in. Then all of a sudden it really hit me late one night. This is a painting of that moment. Its just me trying to make sense of the world, myself and dealing with the events that are thrown at us.
Its like the quote this week at IMT "You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul." (George Bernard Shaw). Its really a painting of how I feel and to that end it is very personal and important to me.

Am I being too sensitive?

How do you other artists cope with (non-helpful!) critisism like this and not let it get you down?

3 comments:

pattie said...

When my good husband, daughter, or friend say those "cutting" words...I have to look at the piece and say..
BUT I LIKE IT! and really that is what is important!!

m. heart said...

laura, i think you hit the nail on the head in your post...art is about trying to make sense of the world, ourselves, and the events thrown at us. these things aren't always peaceful and "nice."

this is just my two cents...but since there will always be someone waiting to criticize (whether you've painted a vase of flowers or something more akin to dante's inferno), i think it's important to stay focused on creating art that pleases you. otherwise you're going to stop at some "safety zone" determined by other people's opinions, and limit your ability to express yourself creatively.

personally, i feel like there's a lot of raw emotion and power in this painting, and i hope you decide to finish it!

laurel said...

It's so hard not to be sensitive about comments because your art is an extension of yourself. You have to keep doing what suits you and there will be others who will see and understand where you are coming from. You let it bother you for a bit but then you move on. I like to scrapbook and one time a friend said it was kind of distracting when looking at the pictures. In my head I'm retorting that otherwise the pictures would just be stuck in a regular album. Still trying to let that one go. ;-)

You are an awesome artist so you just keep expressing your self the way you want to.