Do you ever get into these funks where u feel like ur art is always going to suck so what's the point or periods where you want reassurance/support from people, but you don't believe them when they do give you these things? And then you feel bad for even bringing it up at all bc 'what if I'm being *too needy* and just shitting on everyone's happiness/good moods'? Kinda where I'm at, debated even sending an ask at all bc I didn't want to bother anyone
Oh boy, oh dude -pained laugh- of course I do.
I don’t really struggle with needing other people’s reassurance, to be quite fair, I’ve never been a needy person in terms of validation because I’ve always been quite independent (or reclusive…..if you will.) But I struggle with my own validation of my own art. Put it this way; While you need for others to support you and remind you that what you do is good, and you’ve improved, I need that from myself. But I rarely get it, if I’m perfectly honest.
So yes, I do get into moods where I feel like my art has not improved at all. In ages. Or where it feels like there’s a certain technique I’m trying to learn, and struggling so much that I start believing I’ll never learn it at all. Or I’ll never be good at it. People who do art professionally can still struggle with these things, believe me.
I think part of being an artist is… never being 100% satisfied with what you do. Ever. Never good enough, you’re never happy enough with how it looks. Now this might not happen to everyone but it does happen to every artist I’ve met so… there you go.
If what you need is a little help in this department, let me tell how I try to fight those feelings myself.
First of all you can see that feeling of lack of satisfaction as something bad, a negative feeling that will do nothing but make you freeze in place and feel like there’s no point in trying because you’ll never be good enough. Which, by the way, is not true. Or… you can see it as one of the most useful traits of an artistic person. It is, I’m not bullshitting. Keeping a leveled head and realising there are always things to improve and learn is the best thing that can happen to you, if you think about it. Because there is always room for improvement. Always. No one’s art is perfect. So take it as a benign, humbling feeling, that will allow you to see the faults in your artwork so that you can then learn to correct them. So that you can always strive for more, to become better, improve in those areas that you lack more.
But the trick to this, is to pair that mentality with a positive attitude towards your work, as well. If you do nothing but think that you need to get better, you’ll obsess over your flaws and ignore your many talents. Which you do have. For every time you feel like something needs to be improved, try to find something else in which you have already improved. Realise that you’ve come a long way. Remember your art years ago, notice the many things you do better now. Notice the things you weren’t able to do before, but you’re able to do now.
So, your brain shouldn’t say “This is bad, I need to suck less.”, instead, train it to go “My art is good, let’s try to get even better.”
Your art will never suck as long as you put passion in it, alright? I promise you. And the more passion and the more time you put into it, the better it’ll get. There’s a point to it. Practice makes (near) perfect.
And needing validation is not a bad thing. Artists work with a visual medium but intangible emotions. We strive to provoke something inside people, feelings. To know that we’ve succeeded and that others enjoy what we do feels good. I believe anyone who works with a product that they’re putting out there for the public wants to see said public enjoy it, no? This is the same thing. Finding happiness in other people’s enjoyment is a very positive thing.
That said… please remember that, while having people enjoy your art is good, your art should be first and foremost for you. So many artists get tangled up in trying to please people, and lose their passion and start hating what they do because they stop creating for themselves. Draw to have fun. Draw for your personal enjoyment. Don’t care too much about other people’s reactions and don’t try to please every demand, because it will exhaust you. In short, don’t live for their reaction to your art only. Draw because it makes you happy.