Crisis of Confidence

For my most recent wood block I suffered a crisis of confidence. Knowing I have no real artistic background, that the embarrassingly few art classes I have taken have been scattered through and separated by decades, and with the vision in my right eye wobbling between almost usable and looking out through an impenetrable fog, I decided to trace the image I was planning on using as the basis of my next print. I found the result illuminating. While the tracing bears a nodding similarity to the original image, it also looked like the death mask of a cadaver. But most importantly, the tracing didn’t capture the underlying sadness I wanted the finished print to express.

And now that I didn’t cough nor the surgeon sneeze at a critical time, that there wasn’t an earthquake during the surgery, that a meteor didn’t come from outer space and crash into a power pole right outside the surgery center causing the electricity to go off, that there were neither fire ants nor scorpions biting either me or the surgeon, and I can actually see again, I have a drawing I am happy with instead of a tracing that made me feel like a cheat.

So, some valuable lessons: Short cuts take more time, and The Code of the West still holds true. “Cheaters never prosper. Square shooters always win!”

2 thoughts on “Crisis of Confidence

  1. If you’ve lived at all and spent at least part of your life observing others fairly and yourself severely, then you’ve had all the “artistic” training you’ll ever need.Keep making marks and remember that if you’re taking risks, 95% of your output will be food for the dumpster and be greatful if you’re happy with the other 5%.

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