Tuesday, March 12, 2013

What to do in case of Gremlin attack

Gremlins are assholes. Yes, that's right auto-correct, I said asshole, not as shoal or as soles.

Kelly's art on the wall by my art desk
Today is one of those days, when I sit down to paint and I think I totally suck. I hate these days. They suck all the life and joy out of something that I normally love to do. And it is not a coincidence that the gremlins are attacking now. Because today I am not just playing in my art journal or sketching or working on backgrounds. Today I am finishing some paintings for my first "real" art show. Real as in, it's not a coffee shop that I have a few pieces on the wall, it's a "real" art studio/gallery, where "real" artists have shown their work. So the stakes here are obvious. I have to not suck at this. It can't just be fun. I have to be a serious artist now. Right?

Well, as it turns out, no. In a moment of grace and serendipity, I logged on to Facebook and saw a message that one of my favorite artists, Kelly Rae Roberts, would be having a live chat where she would answer any and all questions at 2pm. And it just happened to be 2pm. So I asked her (super successful artist with multiple licensing deals, has taught many courses, published books, etc) if she ever had days like that. And she said yes. So right away this makes me feel better. So I asked what does she do when this happens, and here is her response :

YES, i have days where i don't feel like my art is any good. 
My best practice for those days is to PRETEND like I'm just having fun, experimenting, and that the outcome doesn't even matter. In those instances, i have way more fun, and take way more risks. 
The more risks = more fun = better work = soul filling.

It's pretty awesome to be able to talk to one of your role models and find out that what you are going through is just part of the process. So I tell myself I need to lighten up here and return to the playful, creative impulses that urge me to paint in the first place. Also, I tell myself that Gremlins are assholes, and I shouldn't listen to them. I make myself a reminder in case I forget:

And then I go back to work.


  1. You and your art are awesome 'young lady'. Tell those gremlin assholes to take a hike.