The feeling artists go through when we have to let go of our work is a mixture of different things; it varies depending on what kind of artist you are. But as an artist, it is a general rule that we’ll have to show our works to the world. Or maybe at least some of it.
For digital artists, we get a little possessive of our work. Maybe it has to do with the fact that our work is easily stolen and discredited. We love our work as it is without putting extra letters beside the actual art, or worse, putting a watermark on it. But people are too selfish or careless or unforgiving. They rarely think of the hours an artist put into an artwork. That little art that someone reposted from an artist’s page probably took hours of work, but people don’t seem to care. And the artist doesn’t get any credit, because the one who reposted probably edited the artwork and removed any names or signatures or anything that will remotely be traced back to the owner. It’s basically stealing, and we all know stealing is bad.
For painters or sketch artists, it gets a little harder. When one of our paintings or sketches gets sold or given, we don’t know what will happen to it. And fear of the unknown is one of the most terrifying and relieving things I’ve ever known. Our work is one of a kind. When we create something, we don’t get to do it again the exact same way. We can sure as hell try, and maybe it will turn out similar, but still not exactly the same. Our works may end up thrown in a garbage, framed neatly to a wall or hidden in some desolate drawer or a dusty stockroom with cobwebs. The possibilities are endless. We don’t even know if we want to know if our work gets a good home or not.
For musicians and/or songwriters, they don’t necessarily part with their work. I guess that’s the difference. They get to share their work and still have it in a way that they get to listen to it after they share it. Though I think they worry about how people would take and react to their work. Will the people understand what they want to say? Will they appreciate the lyrics? The beat? The rhythm? Will they be able to relate? All kinds of questions run through their head, because the music industry is big and probably the largest form of art currently. And the number of audiences that could listen to their work is quite worrying.
For poets, we worry of how people will interpret our works. Poems are mystery and simplicity woven together. Poems may seem simple or complex, depending on the person. It’s quite hard knowing that people will surely criticize your work. They will beat it to pulp until they find some meaning out of it. Word per word, they’ll hang onto every single thing they read to get it to mean something; although poems do have their own meanings, sometimes they are made to just be. Like how a person just feels something without proper explanation or anything. Like how someone needs to cry one night during a normal week. It’s a way of letting out feelings and feelings shouldn’t be criticized.
There are different kinds of artists other than the ones mentioned, and they all have different feelings when letting go of their work. The efforts artists put into their work is great, and the result is always satisfying, no matter how little or much they feel it. Although our work is hard as is, the risks we take as we decide to let the world see our work is difficult, too. It’s difficult putting our work and ourselves out there. And though our work can be indirect, it is even more so vulnerable than our own physical selves, because it is a part of us. It is feelings and emotions and stories of our own that we let the whole world see.