So there I was – joining Red Bubble for the first time. Quite daunting when you see how many top class artists there are here. How could I ever rub shoulders with such quality?
Artists as a whole are a pretty needy bunch, I think. I don’t know about anyone else, but I reckon we’re quietly desperate for approval – constantly needing that positive vibe and feedback from others that “Yes, you are talented” “No your work doesn’t stink”. Deep down we’re just a bundle of neuroses with quite severe self-image issues. But hey, perhaps I’m just talking for myself here.
I had an exhibition recently – my church is quite keen to support local artists, so it was a real thrill to be asked to pin up my pictures there. But all the while they were up I was asking people “Is it OK?” “Do you like this or that?” “Should I have done…?” and so on.
I’m beginning to think that great art, or at least good art, is pure self-confidence and self-belief. When we create something, we draw on our innermost feelings, thoughts and desires – for me it’s a longing to capture the beauty of the world before mankind screws it up – and we do make ourselves tremendously vulnerable.
But I always think that my best work is created when I know exactly what I want – inside there is a confidence that says “This is going to be a great shot” or when I know exactly what I want to communicate through my work. Whenever there is any doubt, that’s when I get a weak shot. Even if I want to communicate something negative like I hate my job or I feel like a slave I know exactly what I want to say and how to say it, and those shots work – at least, I think they do… Don’t they?