Ever feel lost artistically? I've been floundering for the past few days. I had a few really good, happy days in the studio last week, and then Friday I had a very nice woman who runs a local gallery, and is a good artist herself, come by and look over my work, for possible portfolio submission. She was as nice as could be, and gentle (for the most part ;) in her criticism but I saw my work through fresh eyes and said to myself "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?????". I seem to be all over the place in subject matter, style, etc. I used to joke and say I had MSD (Multiple style disorder) but it seems less funny now. There's a local art league that I tried for last year and didn't get into (2nd submission). Their advice: paint, paint, paint and don't give up. ( Ok. If one more person now tells me I'm "prolific" I'm going to run screaming from the room. They say "prolific"... not 'good'.)
This same art league had a portfolio submission talk yesterday AT the gallery run by the woman I mentioned, and 4 people talked about what it 'took' to get a 'yes' from them. Although they all agreed there must be good 'bones' - composition, value, color, mastery of medium and 'heart' - they all emphasized different things. One was primarily a 'formalist' painter and had a sort of checklist of requirements (thick and thin, light and dark, etc) that had to be there for her to give a 'yes', another said it was the energy, and whether or not the art 'hit' him (I think I agree that this is the way most judges go, to be honest), and the other two - well, it was a little rambling, and to tell you the truth I can't even remember what their points were.
Now.... why did this get me so low? Well, for one thing I went on their website and looked at their members, and there were some early members who I think would not have passed this rigorous selection process. And I find this often. And I have such fragile self esteem that I have a hard time rising above this and just going forward. So. No oil painting today. Just a little acrylic sketch of my baby, Harry, napping next to me as I paint. This, actually, is what makes me happy. I probably should just let the rest go, and just do what makes me happy. How boring was this??????? V-E-R-Y! Sorry!