Last week I set out to create two large paintings that I could cut into strips and weave together. I wanted the designs to be similar but also different, to make the finished woven piece look interesting.
The paintings were going along fine. Here’s the first one, which looks pretty good. These are both 40 x 40 inches.
Then I made a fatal mistake with the second painting. I decided to spray it with a light coral color, which was not a good idea. I lost all of the contrast in my lovely buttercup background.
To compound that mistake, I decided to try and rinse the coral paint off. Not only did that not remove the coral, but it smeared some of the other paints, and I also lost the crinkly texture. Here’s how the second painting looks after this morass.
I was so mad at myself for this idiocy, and I was stomping around in a funk the rest of the day. I was beating myself up, and calling myself every negative name in the book.
I was still angry when I woke up the next morning, but then I went out to the studio to have another look at the paintings. Suddenly it struck me as funny and I started to laugh! Of all the things going on in the world, why was I choosing to get so worked up over a painting?
We’re so hard on ourselves. Why? It’s not that big of a deal. I can make another painting, or maybe even salvage this one. Was it really necessary or beneficial to beat myself up like that?
I’m working on having more tolerance and forgiveness for myself — laugh more and be angry with myself less. It’s difficult! I’m harder on myself than I am on anyone else.
If this happened to you and you told me about it, I wouldn’t call you stupid or say you should have known better. I’d use words of comfort, tell you that it’s not so bad, and offer suggestions on how to fix it. I need to get better at doing the same for myself.
Do you have any stories you’d like to share about being hard on yourself or others? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts. You can share them with us in the comments section below.
With love and appreciation,