Thursday, January 14, 2010

Artists; Dedication, Failure, and Support.

My good friend Jordan is currently going through a period that all artists go through. It doesn't really have a name and it's much more complex than writer's block. I'll describe it like this.

Your notebooks are on the shelf, and for a little bit, you don't notice that they're no longer in your bag for spontaneous inspiration or hand while you sleep, passed out from excessive scribbling. And then one day, it hits you.
"I haven't created anything in a while" you say to yourself.
You begin to panic and wonder why you stopped writing or drawing in the first place. You try again, you scribble something. You sketch something, you pick up an old story or an old drawing that you left because it was finals week, or you started dating somebody, or the holidays have kept you busy. But it's not good, and you panic even more. Bodies are disformed and dialogue is awkward and all of your ideas seem mundane and boring.

So you decide to punish yourself and make horrible goals for yourself.
"I'm going to blog and sketch ONCE A DAY FOREVER!"
"I'm going to write 900+ words everyday"
"I'm going to finish a novel in three months"
"I'm going to lock myself in my room until I finish this"
You try making up for abstaining from your art and a week later, you find that your impossible goals aren't working.

Dejected, you think you've failed. Some of us artists will fall into a period of nothingness where we don't create and we don't think about our art since it's too painful. Some of us rise above, set more realistic goals, and create masterpieces.

But it happens all the time, and it's the worst feeling in the world.

I've always admired Jordan's art. We met on a forum years ago where she was the resident fan-artist. I was a young writer at the time, and had stars in my eyes for everyone with talent. I guess you can say that I still have stars in my eyes for Jordan because she is just so damned talented. And she loves drawing, and I love anybody who loves art.

In her most recent blog posts A Realization she reforms her goal of blogging about a sketch everyday and has brought it down to sketching once a day, whether she blogs about it or not. She has realized that you don't have to create a masterpiece every day, you just have to practice.
I realized this earlier at the beginning of the year. In fact, it was one of my New Year's Goals. Jordan is going to sketch once a day, whether it's good or bad, man or animal, funny or serious.... she's just going to do it.

I'm taking a page from her book, since that's what we artists do--we bounce off of each other. I'm not an artist, but I am a writer, and who's to say that Jordan's rules can't apply to me as well? So from this day forth, I am going to write something once a day, whether it be a blog, an essay, a poem, a piece of fiction, or even word vomit in my journal. Some of it will be displayed here, and some of it won't, depending on the personal level of the piece.

I went through my sabbatical, and now it's time to pull myself from it. No longer will lack of confidence be an excuse for me to be lazy. I'll write every day for a year.

I encourage you to follow Jordan's blog because I know she'll be posting some great stuff on there. Here are some of my favorite's of hers that are available on her blog. Though my favorites of hers are Syhindlar fan art that I'm sure she's retired for a long time.

1 comment:

  1. that is so true, I went through years without drawing, nothing I did was ever has been 5 years since I seriously picked up a pencil then this year (maybe it has something to do with ECC) I started again. It was really weird.