My Journey : The Ugly Stuff

I’ve been thinking about showing my work more. Even and maybe especially the bad stuff.


Facebook and Pinterest and Instagram and all the other places we find pretty pictures have conditioned us to to believe that makers are born being amazing. Ie. The internet doesn’t show the time and effort and rejection letters. It doesn’t allow us to take into account the relationships that were dashed upon the rocks of fulfilling a life filled with lots of unknowns. The fruitless late nights or the tears cried in the shower.

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This piece is something that I was initially excited but hesitant about. It was much more detailed than anything I had tried up to that point- Lots of folds and ruffles with the corresponding light and shadow.


I was proud of myself for taking my time with the initial outline and figuring out base shadows. But then I started adding color and my brain just got confused. I realized I was unable to keep value {lights and shadows} at the front of my attention while trying to figure out colors on the piece itself. In the end, it looked like urban camouflage on an outfit Justin Timberlake would have wore circa 1999. I’m not sure I’m able to put in words the disappointment that that comes from unintentionally making JT’s horrendous clothing choices from two decades ago.


And I share because this is the process. This is the part where I learn to pay more attention to my values before I start adding color. This is where I realize I need to mix colors alongside my drawing, not on the piece itself. This is where I remind myself that when I’m in unknown territory I should take breaks so that I can recognize my mistakes before my initial work is not longer recognizable. 


We can’t all be 100% all the time.

Learning growing stretching. It’s important. Even if it is embarrassing.