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Friday, May 09, 2008

The Process of Creating

Here's a quote from Judy Dunn's blog Artrepreneur that's worth repeating. It's good advice for artists, whether you're just starting out or you've been in the game a long time:

The process of creating is precious. Protect it from the critics. The product is just product. It is not precious. It is not us. Let the critics come out and have their say when you are ready to pause. Listen. Notice. See it as a way to learn and grow. And then thank your critics for their input, and tell them to go back in their closet. And get back to having fun creating, testing, playing, experimenting..... Own the process. It is sacred. And control the critics, their words can be valuable tools or deadly weapons.
I think that's really great advice. Every critic has their own opinion, whether it's your mom, or an arts reporter from Art in America. You can listen to them, but don't forget that your opinion counts too. Be true to yourself, follow your own path, and enjoy the process! I think Robert Henri was talking about the same thing when he said:
The goal is not making art. It is living a life. Those who live their lives will leave the stuff that is really art. Art is a result. It is a trace of those who have led their lives.
The product is not us, but it is a reflection of us - and that's only true if we follow our own path rather than trying to please critics. The important thing is to live your life, and enjoy the process.

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