Thursday, December 17, 2015

Just keep swimming

I'm feeling panicky, anxious, blocked. I want to drop my Loula and Hampton story. I'm afraid it's just not worth doing anything with.

I am afraid of landscapes. I imagine the most uninspired children's illustration landscapes I've seen and think that is what mine will be like.

I am afraid of drawing street scenes and interiors (all those straight lines).

Unlike Hampton, I prefer the open-ended to the finished and closed. I don't much like making decisions. Independently completing a children's story with illustrations seems to mean independently making five million decisions mostly right now.

And to top it off, the most reasonable part of me, the part that is not subject to my predictable cycle of idea and discouragement, is fairly certain that my little tale is not going to shake the publishing world, but that nonetheless I should complete it in some fashion because each thing we finish provides grounding and education for the next thing, and I do want there to be a next thing.

The most reasonable part of me is also fairly certain that if I try I can make pretty landscapes, charming interiors and cute birds pushing vacuum cleaners and making music.

So here goes.

(But not yet. First this bit of loveliness, from India, 1700, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I do love pretty trees.)


  1. You should go right ahead and finish your story Melissa. Let me encourage you please! Not just because I judge that your artwork is quite charming, has enough professional finish and creative idea going on to make it worthwhile. But also because you should not let fear of failure stop you. So what, you might fail. You might have to draw a street scene or landscape more that once to get it right. That is the way it goes to be an original creative person. Don't let fear stop you. Get into the zone of creation, have fun, just draw and paint for the joy of getting your ideas on paper.

    1. Thank you for your encouragement. I really appreciate it--being open about my weakness and receiving encouragement from others really helps strengthen my resolve. And I know you're right about failure, fear, etc. After I made this downer of a post, I did a bunch of messy thumbnails and feel so much better about it. Not because I did anything great, but because I did something, did a bunch of somethings.