Lately, I’ve been having an internal battle with myself – whether to try and execute and art idea digitally or physically. I found myself wanting to lean towards physical so badly, but digital still winning over. And when I woke up around an hour ago I realized why! I’m very afraid of making a mistake and not being able to fix it. There’s a certain standard that’s set for everything I create and if I don’t meet that standard it frustrates me to no end. Working digitally, it’s easy to fix any type of mistake – obviously.
Okay short story time. For Christmas last year, I asked for an art tablet for my computer and alongside that I also asked for the computer program, ArtRage. The idea of having so many art tools at your fingertips was intoxicating. So, I got it, practiced with it, became fairly good with the controls and what not. I didn’t try to draw anything physically for three months. Come around March 14th, I felt pretty bad about that fact. Even still, it almost being May, I have barely scratched the surface compared to what I used to pop out on a weekly basis. Now do I regret getting the art tablet and ArtRage? No. Not at all. I think as an “artist” everyone should explore all mediums and platforms. And regardless of any of that, it comes in handy while editing photos like you wouldn’t believe.
This realization brought me to something of an even bigger topic, though. Mistakes are how we learn. Take that aspect of anything away and are we stagnant? Am I stagnant? Have I slightly halted my learning process, or am I still learning even though every mistake I make is easily erased with no evidence of it ever being there. I can try something a million times until I get it right with no repercussion on if it’ll leave a mark. However, I don’t think that necessarily means that I’m not learning. But I do believe that there’s some form of magic that’s missing from a digital platform. You can’t get your hands dirty and literally put yourself into the piece. Your fingerprints aren’t engraved in the smudges and hair doesn’t accidentally fall into the paint. There’s those small things that are missing but I think really give a personal and passionate touch.
I haven’t really gotten anywhere substantial with this argument with myself yet. It’s still brewing in my head. But! I have decided to not be so afraid to make mistakes anymore and I’ve accepted that they will happen. I’m okay with it and I know that in time, less mistakes will happen and I’ll continue to grow more and more pleased with final pieces. The one thing that comforts me is that art is still as exciting and as scary as it’s ever been (regardless of platform) to me and the fact that, that won’t change is what keeps me afloat.