My painting, Gloria, was recently accepted into the Loading Dock Gallery’s national juried show Alienation: The World As it Is Or Should Be. This is the first juried show that a piece from my most recent series of paintings has been accepted into, after what feels like hundreds of years and hundreds of rejections. I am very excited that my piece found a home in this show at this gallery.
This post is most likely going to be about persistence. Or rejection. Or persistence in the face of rejection. Or all the ways rejection can worm its way into your confidence and make you feel like persistence is merely a cute new age thing that you may not be able to trust again ever.
When I am faced with rejection, at some point in the process of self-talk, I will bring up the amazing fact that children’s book author Kate DiCamillo’s book The Tale of Despereaux - yes THAT Despereaux, the cute mouse that was made into a movie Despereaux - was rejected 400 times before finding a publisher. 400 times!! In 6 years!!
That is pretty amazing.
Racking up rejections can be hard and the things that have kept me going so far are:
- Self-Delusion (or, more politely, positive outlook)
- Times like now, where I get accepted
- Reaching out to friends, family, and fellow artists who tell me stories about themselves and about me
- Reading rejections of famous people who finally were not rejected: http://www.keepinspiring.me/15-rejection-letters-sent-to-famous-people/
- Feeling a strange sense of freedom and motivation to make the work stronger, better, or to target it even more closely, find the venues that will truly fit with my work. IE, to get more specific about what it is I am doing in my art. And then see if I can do it better.