Sunday, 1 June 2014

It Doesn't Have To Be Perfect To Be Worth It


So, we've been talking about taking the first steps to finding personal taste.  And I asked you last week about doing cuttings - whether you found it difficult.  Revealing ourselves through the style choices we make can feel very vulnerable.

I said knowing you will have to share cuttings with other people or seeing what they've produced can make it worse.  But actually I find we can be a bit scared of ourselves too.

I was reading about Maggie Whitley taking up embroidery.  She shows some pictures of what she's made and says that we will probably notice that it's not very accomplished and we'll see the mistakes.

I was very struck by what she says next:


What?!

That's certainly not the way I generally feel about doing creative things or other things for that matter.  I make meals and am very conscious of everything that's not as well cooked as it could be (or as healthy as it could be come to that).  Food is measurable in a way - you do know if something is beautifully cooked or not - although there's more uncertainty about judging combinations of flavours.

I go to drawing or sculpture classes and feel frustrated by working on something that isn't perfect.  Obviously it's not going to be.  'Perfection' in art of that kind is very hard to measure, doesn't even exist.  As a human I can create beauty perhaps but it is always going to be inferior to nature where life and magic and what is truly exquisite are made.  But even if it's not perfection, I feel there's still something higher to attain to than I reach.

I realise that takes away from the enjoyment of the creative process and of the finished result.  It's easy to live that:

If it's not perfect, it's not worth it.

It's also easy to live that:

If I'm not perfect, I'm not worth it.   

Are you hard on yourself?  You don't even really know what 'perfect' would be but there's a higher standard, a higher something, to attain to than you reach?

But what about if it doesn't have to be perfect to be worth it - not you or what you do?  That 'sometimes a little imperfect is all we really want anyway'?

It's #imperfect week here again on Wednesday with a giveaway you won't want to miss.

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