Monday, June 9, 2008
Arts & Crafts for Dummies
I'm trying to apply what I know about the art of writing to the art of rubber stamping. The rules are pretty simple:
1. Don't expect to get it right the first time. Do lots of drafts. Expect the first draft or two (or three or four) to be cruddy. Persevere anyway.
2. Practice every day. You will get better no matter what, if you just sit down for a half an hour a day and write whatever comes into your head.
3. Learn from others. Copy the masters. Don't worry about being original, worry about learning your craft. Don't be afraid to get feedback.
The frustrating thing about writing and other creative endeavors is that you start out with big ideas and it's almost impossible to get what's in your head onto the page unperturbed. My skills can't match what my imagination thinks up.
Which is why I have to remember the rules: Lots of drafts, daily practice, feedback. Also: pay attention to children. Will has been doing lots of stamping with me, and all his stuff is really cool. He just stamps the heck out of every piece of paper that's in front of him. He draws a tree, stamps a bunch of birds in the tree, stamps some flowers in the sky, and calls it art.
Like I said, copy the masters.