Art, in whatever form, is meant to be shared. We don’t create (or shouldn’t, as may be more appropriate) to hide these works away. Whether you write, draw, paint, sculpt, create music or create something artistic in any fashion, the world deserves to “look upon” the vision you have breathed life into.
Too often we are our own harshest critics. In our eyes, nothing we do is ever good enough to be shared with anyone outside our most immediate and private sanctum. I am just as guilty. While writing, I think the story is the best thing I have written to date. Afterward, doubt creeps in. That wretched and insufferable bitch creeps in and whispers in our ear, “It’s horrible. Surely you don’t mean to send that out?”
Two recent events prompted me to write this blog you are reading. My seven-year old, Logan, drew a comic (not pictured) that he was so proud of. He is an avid illustrator and wanted to share his cartoon with the class. He brought it in and did not get the reaction he expected. Most of the kids did not get the humor he was going for and had no interest in the cartoon he passed out. He was upset. He began to doubt his own ability. I reminded him that not everyone is always going to like his art. That he was very talented and plenty of people have complimented on his obvious talent. I told him how so many other musicians, artists, writers and creators were turned down or away by some but went on to be wildly successful (Stephen King and J.K. Rowling jump into mind right away).
Another friend expressed to me that she had not sketched anything or drawn anything in a long time because she was so hard on herself. Again, I reminded her that she should feel comfortable in her own creations and that they should be shared, critics be damned. This is not to say that first drafts and products you don’t feel strongly about should just be thrown out into the world, released like fledgling birds with nary a feather to fly. No, if you have created something that you truly feel proud about, something that you know you did your best on, you should lift your chin and boldly present it to the world. There will be those who whisper, or think they can do better. There will be those who don’t get it. But there will also be those who love it. Those who want more. Those who appreciate what you have done. What you are doing is for you, and it is for them. Disregard the naysayers and the inner critic who creeps into your thoughts to wriggle worms of self-doubt into your soul. Silence her. She is just afraid that you’ll succeed and leave her alone and insubstantial.
So please, believe in yourself. Believe in your work and above all else, share it. Where would we be if we all kept our work to ourselves? There would be no Harry Potter to read, or Star Wars to watch. There would be no Disney World, no Mona Lisa. There would be no Beatles. No Phantom of the Opera. No Hamlet. You get the idea, now get out there and create….and let us all have a peek.
You deserve it.