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Things & Stuff

The Blog of Emily McDowell Studio

A Lesson From Art Kindergarten

This weekend, we did a lot of experimenting. And generally, experimenting usually results in a few moments of "Hey, that's cool!" and a whole lot of moments of "Whoa, that's hideous. OH MY GOD DON'T LOOK AT IT I'M A FRAUD." When this happens, my tendency is to give up, put the offending piece aside, and start something new. But one of the great things about making art is that if you don't like something, you get to paint over it, glue something on top of it, or cut it up and reuse it. You can just keep going until you get to the other side of what you didn't like. I started calling this "pushing through the ugly," which Sarajo gently corrected to "pushing through the chaos," since ugly isn't necessarily bad. This is true, but after some thought, I like "push through the ugly" -- whatever "ugly" means to you. Life calls for it fairly often, too, so it's a good skill to have.