One of my friends who recently graduated and was very shy about showing me her final university project inspired me to write this post. Because I know she is not the only one that feels shy about showing her artwork. Because I’ve been there myself.
Sharing your artwork can be scary for various reasons.
However, instead of keeping your work to yourself I strongly encourage you to be brave and to share your artwork with others.
This is why:
- Sharing your artwork frees you from the fear of what people might (or might not) think of it. It helps with learning how to receive and handle criticism which is a great skill to have, especially if your intention is to be a professional artist. The more you hear people comment on your work and the more you get used to receiving criticism, the easier it gets because it is not such a new thing anymore after a while.
- Sharing your artwork frees you from what YOU might be thinking of your work, good or bad. It helps to put things into perspective and to detach yourself from your work. I’m sure that your artwork is very personal to you but don’t let it become too precious, don’t let it become sacred, don’t let it stress you. Instead let it free you, let it be fun, let it be exciting!
- Sharing your artwork is great for testing ideas. If you wonder how your ideas would be received, whether they would get any attention and interest, and whether they are worth pursuing further show them to people! You can often pick up interesting things from hearing what people have to say and it might lead you onto new ways of treating your subject that you wouldn’t have thought about yourself.
- You may notice that you start producing better work as a result of showing your artwork to people (see point 3).
- Sharing your artwork may lead to new ideas and leave you feeling inspired and excited (see point 3). What’s not to like about that?
Sharing your artwork can also benefit the people around you. Have you ever heard of the ‘butterfly effect’ (the concept that something small in appearance can have a big impact)? Seeing how brave you are might just inspire a friend or a family member to start something that they felt unsure or scared about.
I hope this post helped and I’d love to hear about your experience. Have you become more relaxed as a result of sharing your artwork or do you still struggle? Have you noticed any other benefits than the ones I pointed out?