Jealousy of other artist’s work

Stuart Bush Studio Blog, Jealousy of other artist's work

Stuart Bush, Sanctuary exhibition

As we grow up, there is lots of pressure on us to fit into society. We sometimes look with envious eyes at what others have achieved. At school, it is intellectual abilities that seem to count and in the media popular attractive pin-ups stand out.  As we compare ourselves to others we can conclude that we are just not good enough. These thoughts can affect our ego and our spirit. If we withdraw we lose our footing, and then, when we try again, come up short. If we are not careful this can grow up into jealousy of other artist’s work and achievements.
When I was an art student I looked at a wide range of art. Enviability I was blown away by the work of successful artists.  I compared my skills, talent, ability, knowledge and my output against what other artists produced. I ended up continually watching what others were doing. The outcome was inevitable. These thoughts began to limit my ability to think creatively, and they became overwhelming. I started to feel I didn’t deserve to be an artist and it threatened my self-worth.

A way forward without being jealous of other artist’s work

To be a successful artist I needed to figure out a way to unlearn what was causing me harm. A way was to stop comparing myself to others. It was counterproductive feeling. I realised that there was no way I was able to make the same work as another artist, and I didn’t want to.
I realised that l should not be competing with other artists, I needed to run my own race. It’s my process and my path. My work isn’t going to look like other artists.  I am now fully aware that if I get distracted by looking at other artist’s outputs, I will lose my energy and focus. If l allow myself to become distracted then I will have to learn to refocus and listen to my inner voice again.

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I now give myself artistic permission to be myself and make what I want. It is important to be acknowledged for my individuality and I have different strengths to my peers. I look at what makes me unique, and push it forward in my work.

Now when I need inspiration, I look in lots of places. I may look at other artist’s work to learn their processes but I don’t compare my output with their output. Instead, I feed off the creative ideas, take what l want and develop my own perspective and viewpoint.  I avoid jealousy of other artist’s work because my own ideas are developing and growing.

Stuart Bush Studio Blog, Jealousy of other artists's work

Stuart Bush, Sanctuary exhibition

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4 thoughts on “Jealousy of other artist’s work”

  1. Pingback: What it takes to paint something original - STUART BUSH STUDIO BLOG

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  3. I think Stuart that you have hit on a what is a real problem for many of us. We tend to look around, possibly too much, in an attempt to determine our own place in the pecking order. But this is a false concept and can be seriously misleading especially for less confident artists. I so agree with you that we each have our own race to run.
    As last week’s Turner Prize winners were trying to show, competitiveness is divisive and isolating.
    Thankyou for creating the opportunity to air these tboughts.

    1. Hi Sue, thank you commenting. I really appreciate your feedback. Do you think jealously and thinking about the pecking order is the biggest issue that less confident artists face? Kind regards Stuart Bush

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