I have talked about rhythm and creative ebb and flow being similar to the tide. It was one of those extremely low tides yesterday. I did create, lots of signs, fliers and forms for the auction this weekend, but when it came to creating for creating sake, nothing seemed to be what I was attempting to do. I loved the fractal I created with the star burst. I was trying to create another, but I could not seem to achieve one I like as much.
I tend to put a lot of creative effort into everything. So something as simple a form for a silent auction will throw me as I want it to look good. I found myself being critical of everything I made. I finally realized that I was possible being overly critical of what I was creating, because I had switched into editor mode on all the forms and sign and fliers.
Going back and looking at our work with an eye for how to improve it is important. There is however a fine line between that and just being critical.
I have been to any number of art shows where I wished someone had been more critical of their own work. I remember one in particular that had shadows pointing in two different directions on cactus in a desert and a green thumb print in the sky. I looked at it, wondering if the thumbprint was intentional or not. The painting was titled. “Sky with Thumbprint” I gave up and asked the artist, who cheerfully replied. “I messed it up and decided to fix it with a title.”
I find myself looking for thumbprints on my work. I am a firm believer in accidents of art, Things that came out differently than anticipated, that were then recognized as good. I have spent a great deal of time figuring out what went wrong right, so that I can do it again. But, if it is an accident that I would not want to ever recreate, well then, that is not something I want to call art. I choose to walk away yesterday, just leave it all and come back later to see if there really were thumbprints in all my work, or just a reflection in the glass.