I subscribe to About.com’s Painting newsletter run by Marion Boddy-Evans. Today it led me to a post on What Hurtful Things Have People Said When Commenting on a Painting? I read a few and discovered that while I didn’t have the same experiences I had shared some of the same feelings.
When I started out six years ago I wanted everyone (!) I came across to comment on my work. It was new to me, I was finding my way and thought that family, friends, acquaintances and online friends were all in a position to help. Sometimes it was frustrating because no one wanted to put me down or be harsh to a newbie. Sometimes they liked the very things that I didn’t. I also learnt to my dismay that positive comments affected me too. I’d get stuck, too timid to add anything more in case I messed it up!
But that was then. I still love to hear from people but what I take from it now and how it affects me is different. It’s more about whether they like the piece and not what they find right or wrong with it. When I see a painting or a movie or a dress I form an opinion about it. We all have opinions. And sometimes mine don’t match with the way others around me think. It doesn’t upset them or me that our views are different. And with that in mind I hear what people have to say about my work as their opinion. Sometimes, good or bad, it matches mine and sometimes it doesn’t.