It's not good to compare where you are to where you want to be. But I can't help it sometimes. I'm human. I see artists getting good steady work who I feel just aren't any good. So many things frustrate me about this. So many angles. So many different ways to look at it. And I know once this hits the web I'll wish I never sent this out.
But right now?
I gotta let this out.
The thing about art is it's subjective. You think you're good but someone else thinks you suck. So who's right depends on each individuals tastes. Some people really like my art and when they respond to it I know they get it. And some people don't. They don't get it, or they just don't like it. I'm fine with that too. To each his own.
What really frustrates me is the guy who just won't give it an honest chance. As an artist I'm saavy to when someone just won't give it a chance. A new artist that's a nobody will encounter this kind of hostility. 'You are not welcome!' That's the message they send to me.' Don't even try. I don't like you I don't want to like you!'
What is even more frustrating is the way it's hidden from everyone else but me. It's the smallest little notion. The look in his eyes. The slight scoffing at something he sees. The hint of jealousy in his criticism. The fact that he knows that the potential is there for me to actually be great but he's already bet the farm on another horse and has no more room for anyone else. And anyone who threatens his prospect is out. That cynical smirk on his face just screaming at me 'you'll never win me over'.
But it's all covered up! In the most bullshit show of sportsmanlike conduct. I'd rather he be honest and just say I don't like it. It's easier for me.
But the path of the artist is not always easy.
Another thing that frustrates me is when another artist who for some reason has more work under his belt than I do but still manages to completely suck- YET thinks because he has more work under him THINKS he's better than me. Trying to call me on anatomy when his anatomy is just shit. Trying to call me on some bullshit that he himself is guilty of- NOT ME! And because he has more work behind him all his backers just jump on the bandwagon to strengthen his case against mines. I never defend my work. I let it speak for itself. BUT if you call me on something I want to know what it is- better yet you must know how I can do improve on it. So when I look at your stuff it better be there- in your work. The thing you that are calling me on should be in your work.
AND IT ISN'T!
Prejudice. That's the one that frustrates me the most. I know I need to tread lightly on this but fuck it! I AINT! I'm the one on the receiving end of it! I get it. It's a business. In business you cater to the customer. You give them what they want. I don't even know how to set this up.
So let's take it back. I did a job that included characters that have a different heritage than the typical comic book stuff. The guy who hired me was happy with the work.
Fast forward a couple of years- I'm trying to land a gig and the publisher says in the nicest possible way- "Is there any way you can dial down the ethnicity for this project?"
I said yeah no problem, but at the same time it was like swallowing glass. It opened my eyes to the harsh reality. In comic book land we are dealing with Super and Mega and Ultra and all these hyped up fantasies. And I love it all. BUT something about that whole notion had an underlying message that rubbed me the wrong way.
The publisher did nothing wrong. He's doing what a good publisher does he looks after the best interest of his readers.
And then I knew what it was that made me start to feel inferior. That project I did- I drew from life. And when he said to dial it down- to me it was he was saying- People won't buy the book if they look like you (me) and then everything bugged me. TV- all the people have to be perfect looking. Music your record sales will go up if you look great. And I get it it's a business- you want to make money and to do that you do what it takes. And everyone is competing for the almighty dollar. A better looking person will get noticed, be remembered, be liked, be loved.
So what constitutes better looking?
For me the answer I came up with was don't make them look like my mom or my grandma or my grampa or most of the people I love. And then every racist, prejudice, fucked up situation I ever had started replaying over and over again. And it was usually done by the guy at the top. And usually someone with money. And usually some self made white male that had an extraordinary life that lead him to success that allows him to look down his nose to me and say- 'you will never be as good as me."
And that's why I'm so frustrated.
And though that last bit has little to do with art it was the thing that bothered me the most.
I must admit after writing that bit my shoulders are lighter. I could delete this whole thread and still feel better.