PS Artistry, Awake update

I have been fairly quiet on my Photoshop Artistry course, not because I have not been doing it, but in some regards because I have. I still post about travel and photos, but just not a lot about my artwork. Although I have recently begun a series of posts on my Still Life Project. So we are into Session 8, and while there are assignments every week, it is often the written proponent that trips me up. Sebastian asks the hard questions of the Life as an Artist……….

  • What do WE really want to do with our art?
  • What really stops us from achieving our goals in life and art?
  • Where do we want to take our art?
  • What is our intention or purpose for our art?
  • What are our goals and aspirations?
  • Stop obsessing over what other people think and just create )easier said than done)

Stuff like that, Sebastian asked each of us to start and carry a journal, normally I write everything down in that journal, as well as sketches and scribbles for various ideas. I had post -it stickers all over the pages, for ideas I need to come back to someday. I have a whole raft of ideas for future pieces. This is where my Still Life Project started and many others I have planned as well.

Alice featuring Model, Jema

For now, he has asked us to work at our own pace, and to start to develop and mould our artwork into something like an exhibit or gallery show, something we can be proud of. But here’s the kicker, do not do it for others, create for ourselves. We have a closed Facebook Group, where we post images ask for Creative and Constructive Criticism and we receive it usually. Sometimes we do not get a single comment or like, it can be slightly depressing and disheartening, or  you can have such a huge response it puts you on a high, how can you not become obsessed? Are we becoming so narcissistic that we rely on Social Media to feel good about ourselves, our artwork?

And if we do not fall prey to Social Media, how do tell if we are any good? I mean I know we are supposed to do it for us, for fun, and mostly I do, but how do we grow, how do we learn if not from others? To what level do we hold ourselves accountable?

Surburban Redemption
Suburban Redemption

If I was to say I am only doing this for my self, not for any attention or recognition or reward (financially or otherwise) it would be a lie. I am sure that all artists crave recognition, to be told that they are good, or creative, imaginative, or talented. I don’t care what kind of artist you are…………you DO IT for some kind of acknowledgement, surely? Only children create purely for fun, do they not, once done it is forgotten and they are onto the next. Can we really do this as adults as well?

There is a valid argument that obsessing over acknowledgement prevents you from creating, and it is probably true. Yes I have pieces with which I am not happy with and they seldom see the light of day.

Suburban Serenity

Occasionally I have pieces I want to share, as I am so proud of them, I know they are good; I sit back and marvel at what I have created. My friends and family say they are good, but is that because they love me? It’s what people you don’t know say, that’s where the thrill is, people who would not know you in the street, coming up to you (via Social Media anyway) and saying Man……..that is a great piece of art!

But through Sebastian’s guidance, and others I am learning to take more time, re work pieces and ideas, sometimes to trash something and move on. To develop goals, ambitions and to stretch myself. I am trying to learn patience and slow down, life is not a race, and it is the journey and not the destination that matters (is this not true in all corners of life?) Revel in life, be Present in life, to absorb everything, take nothing for granted. It is a soul searching course as well as an artistic one. Sometimes it does not all sink in at once; sometime you have to meditate and contemplate.


As I move forward with this and my Open2Study Photographic course, it will be interesting to compare the two, one is purely photography and the other is purely art. I think I am turning into a philosopher?