The past few months I have been trying to teach myself how to screen print. Screen printing is a time-consuming and difficult process to learn especially when self-taught. I have put a lot of time, money, and literal tears into the learning process. Some of the mistakes I have made have me slamming my hand to my forehead because I was trying to rush. Some mistakes had me in tears while I wash out my screen in defeat.
The rest of the world considers criticism a bad thing, but as an artist, it is what keeps me moving forward. Critiquing is how I learn from my mistakes and fine tune my skills. Not all feedback is equal, which is why I wanted to write an article on how to give and take criticism, as well as how you can turn a bad critique into a good one.
Being able to say no helps prevent your business from failing and helps maintain a healthy economy for the creative world.
Now I know what you are saying, "What a negative article! I was taught being a yes man/woman is the best way to progress in life!"
I would like to take a moment to disagree with you. I have been designing for a few years now and being only agreeable with every client or person you work with can be toxic. Many people won't take advantage of you and will work with you and whatever terms you set, but in some cases, people will try to squeeze anything and everything they can from you. As an artist or designer you need to be able to identify these people before it is too late.
This is how long it has been since I have felt passionate about making art. Four months of walking into my studio space only to look around for a brief moment, then softly back out and close the door behind me. Four months of questioning if I am on the right path. Four months of insignificant doodles in my sketchbook that only made me feel more cumbersome.
Malcolm Gladwell states when I person practices something for 10,000 hours they then become an expert. I have been in printing since I graduated college and I am estimating my printing experience to be around 6,000 hours (You can do the math to try and figure out how much overtime I have done in less than 3 years!). Now I don't claim to be an expert by any means, but I feel confident enough to say that I have mastered the basics.