Artistry and Ego

In my opinion, artists (this encompasses all the arts), walk hand-in-hand with Self-doubt, Self-critic and Ego. They’re numbers one, two, and three on your friends list and they NEVER go away.

Artists, in truth, are solitary creatures. The writer/poet who spends much of their time with a computer or notebook. The artist that works hours Writing_girlon end with brush, hands, camera, etc. The dancer who works alone incessantly in the studio. The actor who studies and memorizes their lines behind closed doors.  The composer/musician with just an instrument and paper. The designer that works solo at drafting table, cutting table, the darkened theatre, a computer. Some may have a team, or troupe, or ensemble, or critique group, but the bottom line is, those of us who strive to express ourselves through artistry, are ultimately alone with our craft.

With the exception of our three friends.

actorThere is always that niggling Self-doubt. What if I’m not good enough? What if they don’t like my story/poem, song, painting, design, performance, etc? What if I never realize my dream?

Or, the nasty Self-critic. It tells  you you’re not good enough. It tells you your story/poem, song painting, design, performance, etc. sucks! It tells you you’ll never realize your dream.

Then there’s Ego, and it can go many ways. Ego can be your detriment:dancer

I’m good enough, there’s no way they won’t like my (fill in the blank). This (fill in the blank) is awesome! It’ll become the next greatest (fill in the blank).

Pride goeth before the fall. You get bad reviews, or your work doesn’t sell, your performance was flat, or others in your craft are disparaging and you get sucked down into a black pit of despair at which time Self-doubt and Self-critic become your BFFs.

Or, Ego can be your savior:

designSomeone liked my (fill in the blank)! If I reach, touch, inspire, entertain someone, even one person with my (fill in the blank), it’s all worth it. I think this (fill in the blank) is awesome, I hope others will too.

Not setting yourself up for the fall, you get mixed reviews, or your work doesn’t sell as well as expected, but does sell, your performance mediocre, but acceptable, or others in your craft are disparaging, but not harsh, and you don’t let it get you down even though Self-doubt and Self-critic are still on your friends list.

Or, Ego let’s you get silly or obnoxious:composer

I’m on top of the world! Take that nay sayers, I did it! Yippee!! My (fill in the blank) is awesome! My (fill in the blank) rocked! OMG, I hope this lasts. What (fill in the blank) do I do next? Can I top that? Can I at least maintain my artistry?

Feeling good and still on your feet. You get rave reviews, your work sells, you get standing ovations, you’re written up in articles, etc., others in your craft are encouraging/supportive/disparaging depending on their own egos, and YES, Self-doubt and Self-critic are still your friends.

artBecause, they are ALWAYS there for the artist.

For me, I’ve gone through all of it. Most of the time privately, because that’s the way I am. However, I can only go so long before it boils over or oozes out. I have a voice that smacks my friend Ego every time it gets out of hand, but that’s another topic. I’m not sure it’s a good or bad thing, because that same voice doesn’t throw down with Self-doubt and Self-critic and maybe it should. I’ve been sharing company with the two of them a little too much lately.

How about you? Do you have ways of reigning in these things or do you let them run rampant? Are these miscreants on your friends list?

Play Lists Aren’t Play Until They’re Played

I need a new playlist.

I like making playlists.

So, why is it that I feel like the next one I put together is going to be work?   silverclock

Hmm, maybe it’s time:

*My day job.

*My need to write

*Trying to keep up with social media

*Critique groups

*The home front

*Needing sleep

*Other time sucking devices

Soon, I will find a place to wedge in a new playlist making session, but until then I leave you with this.

https://rgcalkins.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/05-rest.m4a

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
― J.R.R. TolkienThe Fellowship of the Ring

~ RG

Gettin’ My Irish On!

All this week I’ll be posting. Yes, you heard me–all week. I’m feelin’ my ancestry and I’m going to post something Irish everyday!

I’m starting the week with a repost of my St. Patrick’s Day playlist.

singing irish

Eireann           Afro Celt Sound System

Drunken Lullabies          Flogging Molly

The Broad Majestic Shannon          The Pogues

I’ll Tell Me Ma          The Young Dubliners

What’s Left of the Flag          Flogging  Molly

Dunford’s Fancy          The Waterboys

The Kilburn High Road          Flogging Molly

The Foggy Dew          The Young Dubliners

Shanne Bradley          The Pogues

The Paddy Set          Seven Nations

(No More) Paddy’s Lament          Flogging Molly

I’m Shipping of to Boston          Dropkick Murphys

The Irish Rover          The Pogues

Black Friday Rule          Flogging Molly

The Battle March (Medley)          The Pogues

Soft Gator Girl          Seven Nations

Stolen Child          The Waterboys

The Seven Deadly Sins          Flogging Molly

The Rocky Road to Dublin      The Young Dubliners

Grace O’Malley     The Dreadnoughts

She Moved Through the Fair          The Chieftains w/Sinead  O’Connor

I hope you will check out some or all of the above songs and artists. Here are a couple for your listening pleasure. One of them makes an appearance in my novel. 🙂

03 I’ll Tell Me Ma            10 Soft Gator Girl

Taitneamh a bhaint as ~ Enjoy!

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