Making To Make Happy
Own Your Adventure | Share Your Work For YOU
Updated: Aug 11, 2022
I come into writing this article as somebody who, for at least the first thirty years of my life, never shared any creative endeavour easily. If someone showed enough interest, I might, in a fit of bravery, show them a story I had written or a doodle I had drawn, but I never felt comfortable about it.
Even now, in real life, face to face with people I know, I generally only talk about my art endeavours if someone specifically asks - which is rarely. So, believe me when I say, I get it - sharing your art is hard.
So, why are we scared to hold up our art to the world? We all have our reasons, and many of them stem back to avoiding feeling judged. Art is often created because we are expressing something - and so it is tied into how we personally, subjectively see the world. When we share it, we are permitting others to view it through their own subjective lens, and every single person will see it differently. Some will vocalise their opinions, others will not - but the fear of this unknown, unpredictable reaction can lead us to imagine the worst.
My main reason for not sharing art in previous years was this:
I thought, that people would think, that I thought I was better at art than I knew I was. Does that make sense? I figured that the very act of sharing my work would herald to everyone that I thought I was amazingly talented - which I knew I wasn’t. It didn’t help that I knew other people who were amazingly talented and who didn’t share their work…because if they didn’t (when their work was clearly better than mine) then what hope did I have?
THIS IS RIDICULOUS. (You knew I was leading to that, right?)
At some point along the way, I began to realise that none of my fear-mongering to myself was helpful. I also realised that, as is often the case, the issue as it had lived inside my head had been far more exaggerated than it turned out to be once I let it out.
When I started sharing I took tentative steps. I started an Instagram with a dedicated account for arty things, separate from my personal account (which I rarely ever used). I put some of my artwork onto a free website with Wix. I hardly told anyone I knew in real life about any of these things. I didn't gain more confidence from it overnight - but it grew from continuing to click the button. Every time I shared, I realised that I was affirming to myself that my art was worthwhile - and that repetition of belief finally started sinking into my soul.
The person who cares most about your art is you. Much of the rest of the world will not be that fussed, which is totally ok. Some people will find your work and like it, and those like-minded souls will boost your confidence.
The point to remember is that the reactions from other people are not why you should share your work. Regardless of how everyone else reacts to your art, the main reason for putting it out there is for you.
The act of sharing your art - the very simple bit of clicking the publish button on a social post, or setting your website to go live - that is the moment to cherish. Because that right there is the moment you start letting go. Every single time you do it, and the more times you do it, the better that feeling gets.
Releasing your art into the world releases your grip on it. It brings a relaxing of the fear, and a building of confidence.
Not every artwork you ever make needs to be shared - not every artwork you ever share needs to be finished. You can decide what you keep for yourself and what you let others see.
Sharing is about owning your own adventure, and in doing so, giving yourself permission to keep going. It brings you towards others who are on similar paths to you, and expands your community and resources. It is an action that says, from your heart to your mind, “we’re doing this!”.
Thanks for reading!
Keep making to make happy!
Love Gem x