And so I carry on thinking…
The question that has lodged itself (thanks Franny) is the one about it feeling too easy.
This is one that has come back over the last ten years or so to haunt me frequently. It is a question about how I value myself and my work. It’s also the judgement I make about other artists’ work. Is it skillful? Have they spent a long time on it? (this might be time spent before the making of the thing itself, but it would show in some way, not be slapdash) Does it look considered, thoughtful?
I am aware these are sometimes seen as “old-fashioned” considerations, but they are mine. We get where we are, and we are who we are because of the lives we have led, the education we have had, the people we meet etc etc…
I feel in regard to my own work, whether it is stitched or drawn, that there should be some meatiness in there. I can stitch decoratively, I have skills, I can draw fairly well too. I can draw from observation so that a thing looks like a thing. But I feel that making without substance, without the meatiness, without the concept and so on… is not professional. I am a professional. I make pretty things, and they are my hobby if you like. Ironically I would probably sell more. There was a period in my life when that is what I did. I made nice things and I sold them. I make nice things now for myself, or I give them away to friends and family out of love, not for money. They are the things I do while I watch tv in the evenings, because I cannot just sit.
But the Art with a capital A I take seriously. (I hope that I don’t take myself too seriously, because that would be very irritating). It is the thing I hold my faith and belief in. It’s how I do my thinking. I owe it. Big time. It has changed my life. So yes, if I feel if it is “too easy”, then I’m not doing it properly. I’m cheating. When that happens, I sit back and think a bit harder about what I’m trying to do.
Does this make sense to anyone else?
Does anyone else feel this way?
Not that that matters. It won’t change the fact of how I feel, it would just be interesting.