"Ugh! I hate my art! It sucks!" - How many times have you thought that in the last week? And beyond the frustration, how does that make you feel? Do you see this feeling going away once you start improving? You're about to learn why you need to embrace that your art sucks and why you're lucky that it does!
See, hating your art is pretty common in the art-verse. Especially in the beginning when you have high hopes and unachievable expectations.
You focus so much on where you want to be and how you're not yet there, that you forget to enjoy what you already have.
"My art sucks. Whatever should I be enjoying about this?!"
I used to feel the same way years ago when my art was sooo bad. I couldn't wait to get better. I was desperate to be at the level I longed for. To be praised for my art skills.
But now that I am, I look back and long for those days when I was still a newbie. And I know most of you will too.
That's why today I want to show why you need to embrace the fact that your art sucks and why it's actually a good thing!
Your art sucks because you're experimenting and trying new things!
Don't get it wrong, though. This doesn't mean you need to stop experimenting. On the contrary. It means that you're experimenting with something you're not skilled at.
You're trying your hand at something new. You're saying "buh-bye" to your comfort zone and diving into tall grass without your favourite pokemon.
You're venturing into new territories and you're obviously not going to be good from the get go! Nobody's born knowing everything.
Anything you want to master in life takes time and effort. And when you try new things, you'll suck at it.
But, practice and some feathers blowing up in your face when you say the magic words wrong later, you'll be good!
If your art sucks, it's because you're trying to develop new skills and new techniques.
Which brings us to the next point...
Why becoming good can be a trap you don't know how to escape from
Earlier in the post, I mentioned how I used to dream of the day I would finally be awesome when I was still a newbie.
But now that I'm good, I look back and miss the days when I was still learning and messing up.
Every so often, when procrastination kicks in and suddenly cleaning the fans of my custom-made PC feels like an exciting and almost irresistible task, I take a trip down memory lane instead.
In this case, memory lane = my old art on deviantART.
I go through my old artworks and as I look at them I'm overcome with a sense of longing and melancholy.
These old artworks full of ridiculous anatomy, wonky expressions, weird coloring and compositions so messy they make you wonder how many long island iced teas I must have had to come up with that.
Yes, those artworks.
This one in particular always comes to mind because I wouldn't be brave enough to draw this now.
Why would you miss that?!
That's a good question! And, I didn't know the answer up until a few days ago when another artist told me how insecure they felt about their art.
And I realized, I feel more insecure about my art now than I did 8 years ago.
Isn't that crazy?
So, I dug deeper into that realization and I found out why I felt insecure and why I longed for the old days when my art sucked (big time).
I was free to draw shitty things.
I could draw anything my heart desired and if it looked wonky, so be it!
But, now? I play it safe. I'm too scared of stepping out of my comfort zone. Of trying new things and making something that sucks in the name of progress.
I'm trapped by my own skills and I don't know how to break free.
So I long for the good ol' days where I could draw anything I wanted, not caring what it would look like. Or worrying that people would think my skills are worsening if I experiment with new techniques and fail.
But, when you're so worried about making the perfect artwork, the life it used to have vanishes. And your art begins to look stiff and plain. High-quality, but lifeless.
It lacks the spark of creativity that comes when you don't care about it being perfect. You care about having fun and testing your boundaries. That's when the best art happens!
Why you should embrace the fact that your art sucks
Enjoy this time because it will come to an end. Your efforts WILL pay off. You WILL improve.
You're becoming the artist you've always wanted to be, one drawing at a time.
And, soon enough, you'll stop venturing into the unknown. You'll stop going out of your comfort zone.
You'll decide to focus on what you're good at. Secretly fearing trying something you're not good at and feeling like a fraud.
And you'll be trapped by your skills too.
Enjoy the freedom that being a growing artist gives you. Have fun. Draw all the crazy things. Try all the ridiculous poses. Paint with all the colors of the wind.
And, maybe you don't need to embrace the fact that your art sucks.
embrace the adventure and fun that comes with developing a new skill
Remember the fun. The excitement of trying something new. The boost of confidence when you see your efforts paying off.
Remember all that and kick your comfort zone to the curb. Only then will you be free from the trap of being good and you'll actually become better than you could've ever imagined.
Over to you - Do you see your art differently now?
Do you ever feel like your art sucks? Or you hate your art but you're not sure why because everyone around you says it's good? I hope this post inspires you to embrace your art, regardless of its quality!
Are you remembering to have fun while you draw? Or has it become a chore on top of your already packed to-do list?
What can you do now to make drawing fun again? Let me know in the comments below!