A few weeks ago, I asked this question in my weekly newsletter:
What ONE thing would you LOVE to have changed or accomplished 90 days from now, if you didn’t care about what others would think about that?
And I got some amazing answers back!
And one of the amazing answers was an email from someone we’re gonna call Creative_Art_Lover.
Her 90-day ONE THING is to create her very first piece of furniture.
Which got us talking about her desire to only create perfection, and how that’s stopping her from taking consistent action.
Which is something so many of us are struggling with – be it in creative projects or in the workplace when giving a presentation or leading a project or sharing your opinion in a meeting or simply sending out a thoughtful email.
Here’s what she wrote:
I love crafting, drawing, redoing furniture and creating in general, but I struggle to when it comes to giving myself permission to play and fail and make something less than perfect.
I have a fine arts background but have gotten away from practicing my art consistently for almost a decade.
So I’m really afraid to just create for the sake of creating and don’t know where to begin.
Thanks so much for all of your messages, they are truly inspiring and keep me headed in the right direction!
And here’s what I wrote back to her:
Ah, the curse of perfection, right?
I used to think that photographers took the perfect picture right away.
That is, until I took my very first photography class – an online CreativeLive class (years ago, taught by photographer David duChemin – so talented) only to learn that photographers take plenty of pictures (including plenty of crappy ones!) before they select the final few that make the cut.
What I learned from David is that the more you are willing to push yourself, which inevitably leads to creating crappy stuff every time you push yourself out of your comfort zone, the more you’ll expand + deepen your skills and build that muscle memory that leads to taking the stunning pictures.
I also used to think that painters painted the perfect paintings from the get-go.
That is, until I saw all the sketches they made.
Or how sometimes they overpainted parts of their paintings – still noticeable today and even in paintings that are worth millions today (like e.g. one of the Degas paintings I saw in a Glasgow museum a few years ago).
What if you were willing to make lots of crappy pieces?
What if you were willing to overpaint and adjust the work you’ve created?
All the greats do it too.