In fact, I think artists that create art, are more humble as a group than any other group of creative people!
Ever compliment an artist? Newbies will blush and say Really?? You Really like it? People that have been doing it a while will say….oh that one? really? Thank you but I wish I had done this or that ….and Seasoned artists will accept your praise with humble pride but secretly think….I really don’t like this or that about it!
I remember, a couple of years back, a regular customer finally peaked my curiosity. I asked if I could see some of his work? He looked at me and said with a soft smile ” Well I have a little show going on now you could go see.” I said ‘Oh I would love to where is it at?” and he replied ‘The Kamloops Art Gallery”. I laughed with joy that even someone well known and accomplished enough to have a show at the KAG, would still be so humble about himself. That was an eye opener!
Now tell a musician you like their talent and they will break into song,just to share some more with you! I know this because I am married to one!
Why is it, we as artists are so self depreciating? Why are we not bursting with pride at our work? Is it because we feel the art angels will frown and take away all our special powers if they catch us being boastful?
You know why I think we are like this? Because every single painting has a piece of our souls in it. Every colour and every stroke is taken from within. Every piece, is sharing a deeply personal part of yourself with strangers and it makes us feel vulnerable. So we are humble and wait quietly for someone else to validate our art. Because singing from the rooftops “Yes I am that beautiful brilliant colour of oranges and red and I am a beautiful being!” feels like we like ourselves just a little too much! We can’t have that can we??
Being humble and promoting your work are kinda conflicting strategies. As artists become more seasoned they become better at sharing and saying in a little louder voice, I am an artist! But even then , inside, there is this little humble being that whispers ” Are you really?
To be truthful, I think being grateful and humble about your gifts is awesome and right. But then how will you share your art? In order to promote your art you have to be willing to put it out there and have confidence in your work. You have to being willing to say yes I think my art is worth sharing! That is really hard for many. We create for ourselves but also want to share that gift. Therein lies the frustration with being an artist! In order to share your work you have to show your colours and that is hard! That puts you out there where people can see you!
So having the confidence to share your work does mean some will not like your art(and that feels like they don’t like us) but some will! Some will love it and you know what they will see? An Artist!! Someone who pours their heart and soul into their work and shares their colours, passion, and shines!