Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Polished to Perfection

      When I collect sea glass or beach stones, I have very high standards. Nothing comes home with me unless it is fully polished to a velvety smoothness. Any roughness or "unfinished" areas, sends it straight back into the ocean for nature to finish her work.  The sea always accepts my critique and just keeps doin' it's thing.  No voice yells back at me, "Hey, I put a lot of time and effort into that piece! It's almost done. Yeah. It's good enough!"  Time and again that has been the inner dialogue/excuse I've had with myself when judging one of my own sketches or paintings.   Spotting a glaring error or a tiny mistake can sometimes starts a whole negotiation.  It wastes my time and clouds my judgment. Well, no more.

    As I sorted my recent finds from the Great State of New Jersey's Manasquan Beach, I delighted in each piece in my collection.  Then it dawned on me, this is exactly what I strive for in my portfolio.  A perfectly polished group of work.  But why,  when I have the ability to see improvement needed in others work, is it so hard to have the same clarity and ruthless judgement toward my own?   Don't I possess the ability to judge my own work with equal confidence?    I believe I do.    I seem to possess a very loud, sometimes insecure inner voice, that can be kind of a bully. Being aware of the problem isn't fixing it, but until the arguments stop,  I'll rely on my amazing critique group to point out which piece is finished and which doesn't belong in the collection yet.

    For now, my soft beach stones sit on my studio table.  A reminder to get on with creating a polished to perfection portfolio.   Each piece a keeper!

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