One of my struggles as an artist is the one I face with many of my paintings, and involves developing and communicating my vision. I understand the importance of draftsmanship and skill, which I also struggle with, but, ideally, I would like for everything that I create to speak to the viewer on some level, reveal something about myself, and hopefully resonate with the viewer. However, as I begin working on a piece, I sometimes find myself worrying more about the draftsmanship, rather than fully developing the concept and vision. The result is art that doesn't quite hit the mark I was aiming for.
Draftsmanship, technique, and skill are important, no doubt, but without vision, emotion or feeling, I find the piece lacking when presented as a work of art. Typically, at some point, I realize the piece just isn't working, but I am at a loss as to how to recapture the initial inspiration and convey the vision. There is a disconnect, and I often flounder as I struggle to overcome it, and become mired in reworking areas.
As an artist, creating good art requires pushing yourself on all levels, and may very well mean that you are never satisfied. Taking time to develop the concept, and then fully putting yourself into it, focusing not only on technique and skillful rendering, but on mood and achieving the vision, requires a commitment of time and energy, and often takes quite a bit off trial and error. All of which is easier said than done.
artbiz.com had an article titled, "What makes good Art?", which included quotes from many collectors, gallery directors, and art curators. The one below stuck with me.
Alan Bamberger, itinerant artster, San Francisco: At its most fundamental level, good art is an effective combination of concept, vision and mastery of medium (the ability to get the point across). Good art is also uncompromisingly honest, unselfconscious, bold, ambitions, enlightening, original, challenging, and a feast for the senses. It doesn't necessarily have to have all of these qualities, but at the very least it has to keep you coming back for more. . . and never ever bore.