esteemed and accomplished

hey hey hey hey whatcha doin'?
hey hey hey hey whatcha doin’?

This picture has absolutely nothing to do with tonight’s theme but I liked it so I added it. Besides, I have been woefully lax in my photo taking, mostly due to the weather. It’s hard to take pictures in snow, rain, ice, high winds and freeeeeezing temperatures. So you will have to live with a picture of a goat. It’s a very nice goat, inquisitive, loving, and, like all goats, kinda funny looking.

I’m getting distracted from my thoughts here…not a rare occurrence in my life. Let me get back on track.

Oh yeah. esteemed and accomplished. These adjectives were said about me this past week. Me. Really?

It seems to me that all artists struggle with feeling appreciated. I know I do. I also know that no matter what other people say about me, I am going to filter it through my “aw shucks” filter. I think this has something to do with my mother who did her darnedest to make sure that none of her children would get a swelled head. That’s not to say she didn’t support us or go Oooooh Aaaaaah over everything and anything we accomplished. But the message was that we were to stay humble through it all.

If the message doesn’t go through this first filter, then it will definitely go through the “I’m not worthy” one. You probably know that one. Add the two together andย you’ve got a recipe for disbelief at positive feedback. (Just as an aside, I am even worse at hearing negative feedback.)

So you can imagine my reaction to hearing someone call me an esteemed artist on Thursday and then getting an e-mail describing me as an accomplished artist on Saturday. The funny thing is…I am kinda starting to believe it. Now that my mother is no longer among us living folk, I don’t have to play it down in order to be the good daughter. And while I don’t think it will go to my head, I actually kind of feel, well, proud to have been described with these words. I can feel the struggle within me even as I write these words. It is uncouth to acknowledge that one i talented or smart or beautiful or…I guess my mom taught me well.

What I want to do is keep these words at the forefront of my thoughts, especially when I start to doubt myself (often) and worry that I’m not working hard enough (even more often). I can easily come up with a zillion excuses as to why someoneย should not like my work, or not be inspired by what I do. I will spare you the list.

I guess my point is that people see what they want to. I know what happens “backstage” and I know how much personal work I still have to do in order to be an esteemed and accomplished artist in my own mind. I also know that the esteemed artists that I look up to may very well feel the same way that I do. Esteem comes from outside. Confidence comes from within. I’m working on bringing the two closer together.

If you have been reading this without knowing what I do, take a moment to see my website and make your own decision…



18 thoughts on “esteemed and accomplished

  1. I think that being humble is ok in small is hard to accept compliments for a lot of people…upbringing maybe the reason..for myself I have this thing where if I get a compliment on something I have done I find it very hard to accept..i have had people in the past say nice things and laugh about it behind my back..only to find out it was all just a i always feel more worried than anything that it is a shallow compliment said to just shut me up or keep me happy..urghhh our minds are super! i am far from accomplished in many areas..and never will i be held in esteem..i will settle for ..she’s not bad ๐Ÿ˜‰ personally i truly do admire the work you do an have shown hubby the recent now pics with your sculptures and we both said “don’t you hate people with talent ” ๐Ÿ™‚ all meant in a very positive way of course ๐Ÿ™‚ hugs and les bev ..pee ess love me a goat ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

    1. I will love you a goat when the weather warms up…compliments are slippery things and don’t always stick. My mother-in-law was superb at the compliment without substance. I never really believed anything she said. I think you are an accomplished home and animal owner…I hold you in the highest esteem for all the work you do. ๐Ÿ™‚

        1. Cool! I didn’t really know anything about goats until I moved next to a goat farm. I still don’t want to take care of them, but I like to visit every so often. Especially when there are babies. I always congratulate the moms and the them they’ve done a good job.

  2. I can totally relate. I have a history of not being able to accept compliments and kudos. We all need to be kind to ourselves.

  3. Why is it that there’s always someone out there that we hold in esteem? The accomplished artists that we feel have ‘made it’ in the world of art. Yet when we meet these artists we find that they have the same self-doubts that we have. They are looking to others whom they believe are accomplished and whom they hold in esteem. I know of one such artist whom I felt was accomplished when I was in possession of a piece of her art well before I ever met her and became her friend. Yes, Virginia, you are an accomplished artist and I hold you in esteem. Go doubt yourself, but the truth is that you are a phenomenal artist.

  4. I have a Snoopy cartoon of Snoopy wearing a crown on a bench and embracing all of his glory. And then Woodstock reminds him that he’ll have to move over when people come by to wait for the bus. It makes me smile and reminds me to be both proud of my accomplishments and humble as well.

    p.s. I love the random goat photo.

    1. I love the random goat picture too. They are so silly those goats. I like your cartoon. I think that says it all…Pride and humility can live in the same person…

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