Monday, September 10, 2012

Artistic Insecurity

Tonight I found myself googling:  "artists and insecurity."  Yep.  I'm having one of those days.  And it led me to wonder how people overcome this, because I know I'm not alone.  One blogger posed the question:

" what extent [does] insecurity drive creativity, and when [does] insecurity actually undermine creativity"? (Ross).

I know the "when" answer to the latter part of that question...what I am still searching for is a solution to the "how."  (Love the line in The Beatles song "Something" when George sings, "You know I believe in how.")  How it undermines creativity is that it can stop it from happening altogether. do you fix that...stop that from taking hold? 

I am surrounded by truly talented and overwhelmingly productive artists, and somewhere in that space, I question my own creative movement(s)...slow...and resting.

So...I welcome your thoughts. 


  1. Suggestions: Honor your process; don't judge it. Write something every day, and if you are having trouble, consider doing some stream-of-consciousness writing, which is great fun, and which you might turn into something fruitful later. Or, okay, don't write--creativity knows no boundaries. You might get that camera going, paint, cook (ha ha), or dance around the living room with Bailey (to Beatles music, of course). Poetry is boundary-less--Have fun!

  2. I love that opening line...because I do...all the time. And I know you know that already.

    I think I'm hindered by competition, the need to feel like publication makes your work worthy, and all of those other fun issues that can arise. Cindy and I had a talk about this a couple of years back. There is this idea in the artist community that if you are published, you are a "good writer," but if not, your work isn't justified. At the time it made me sad that she was hanging up her pen. Now, I see what she was struggling with. I caught the bug.

    A lot of this is just my way of thinking. Of being. I went to our convocation today and heard a colleague say that she was excited/honored to be working with the talent that we have. It made me realize that my way of viewing things needed to be altered.

    The other issue arose out of two losses: my aunt and Shelley. Irony there is - my aunt told me on her death bed never to stop writing. Both of them kept a journal, and I saw how the people responded to their writing after they died. They hung to words, felt stress as opposed to relief (not solely, but I saw the negative impacts)...and after I witnessed that, as part of my grief, I quit journaling. Even with this blog I hesitate to write because you hit the nail on the head. I judge. Every word. And I know that does nothing but stifle my process.

    It is imperative that we practice our craft. Work at it every day. But somewhere in there I am still left with what I've seen happens when work is left behind. And I don't know how to resolve this issue. I've grieved their losses. But their writing remains alive; and I've seen both the positive and negative after effects live on.

    Of course, unmentioned, is issues that lingered the final weeks of school.

    So, in light of that...I struggle. I am thankful that I have fellow artists that I grew with, wrote with, created with during ULL experience (and still do). And miss you!

    I love my job. I love that I am a creative writer...a woman who has a place to develop new ideas and new ways of thinking. to find my process again...