I withdrew from all of my art classes dropping art as a minor. I was a failure as an artist.
Wednesday I handed in the final art project of my freshman year at Purdue. I stayed up all night completing it. I had “half-assed” it because it didn’t take weeks to complete.
As an artist, sometimes you are just in the zone and can create amazing art in a day. But the perfectionist in me had created unrealistic “rules” around art. My “rule” was that any great art had to take at least a week to complete.
My professor had a different reaction. “Trish, this is amazing! Can I include it in an art show this weekend? The show is for upperclassmen, but this is upperclassmen-caliber work. I love it!”
“Sure, I guess,” was my response. In my mind, I thought, “Lady, I did this in a night, it sucks!”
My professor called me on Monday with what she thought was wonderful news, “Trish, I am so excited, you won second place in the art show!”
Second place as a freshman in a show featuring juniors and seniors? Not too shabby, right? Wrong! My frame was that second place wasn’t first place and what was the obvious conclusion in my narrative? I sucked as an artist.
I framed this situation as a failure and quit doing art-for over 30 years!
Robin Keck, a wonderful friend, is a master framer. The woman takes art and frames it to highlight its beauty.
Three vessels is a piece I bought by the Gullah artist, Johnathan Green. This came with a plain black frame that distracted from vs. highlighting the art.
Robin reframed it. She highlighted its beauty by adding a small red interior matte that brought out the colors in the painting. This reframing does not reinterpret or mask the art. Instead, it highlights it.
I had framed second place in an upperclassmen art show as a failure because the story I made up in my head was that I did not spend a week on the art, therefore it was a failure. Really?
With the perspective of age and lots of therapy (😊), I now realize that my narrative, not my art created the failure. I have now reframed the failure and realize second place for what it is, an honor, not a failure!
That failure narrative caused me to miss out on the joy of art for 30+ years of my life.
I took a great honor and turned it into a great failure missing out on the joy of art for years.
Have you let a narrative/story create a failure for you?
Join me on March 1st (the date has moved out a week), to talk about how to reframe failure for success.
I have created 2 times for the webinar on Wednesday 3/1/23 at 11:00 AM OR 6:00 PM..
You can register here or reply to this email to sign up. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/from-failure-to-success-tickets-546062005157