Last week I attended a reception for an art exhibit where I had 2 pieces being shown. I was POSITIVE that BOTH of these photographs I had in this show would win awards. WRONG! Nothing…nada…zero…
I was disappointed. How could this happen to me? My work is better than the others that won. And then I started thinking rationally again. If I make photographs to only please others…I’ve lost it. That kind of thinking sets me up for heartbreak. I’m smarter than that.
Here’s what i need to remind myself. I make art for ME. If a judge likes it…great! If a patron buys it…great! But the really important thing is that I have to like it and be proud to have my name on it.
I can still painfully remember the first photograph I exhibited publicly years ago. I actually thought it was good enough to be a Nat Geo cover shot. Of course it wasn’t! It was awful at best. But I liked it…and thats what counted.
This recent experience reinforced a valuable life lesson for me. I’ll try to continue to make meaningful art that I like. I’ll continue to learn and improve my craft. If I do in fact do that…I’ll be just fine.