UWS President’s Message – March 2019

Julie Ickes_van Gogh

I am a good example.  Of what we should not do.  I have learned recently that the main reason that people procrastinate is due to fear of failure.  I believe this is part of my problem.  For instance, sometimes I plan to go play pickle ball.  And I often chicken out because I know that whomever I get teamed up with is destined to lose the game along with me.

I have done the same thing with art.  I have belonged to the watercolor society since 2003.  I am ashamed to say that I entered an exhibition for the first time 2 years ago. I was motivated only because suddenly I was Vice President/President Elect, and I knew that it would be unprecedented and ridiculous to be in that position without even entering one show.  And why hadn’t I? Because I was afraid of rejection and knew it would be an even bigger stretch to win an award. So I kept waiting to hopefully be a better artist someday.

So guess what?  The first time I entered, my painting, “Summer Flowers” was accepted into the Spring show!  Then I was rejected for fall, then accepted the next spring.  Then failed to make the cut for the fall exhibition again.  But I am a Two Star Member now.  Just think, if I had been entering all along, I could possibly be further along for Signature recognition.

Bottom line of what I have learned is:

  1. The whole process of painting and entering is fun just because you get involved.
  2. Rejection only hurts for one day or less.
  3. Getting accepted gives you a boost for much longer than one day. Maybe forever.
  4. You never know if your painting is seen as quality work to a judge until you try.
  5. Painting for exhibitions pushes you to greater levels of excellence.

On the other hand, in his career of about ten years, Vincent Van Gogh painted thousands of paintings and only sold one.  So his motivation must not have been financial or awards, or critical acclaim.  In fact his work was criticized and ridiculed. Yet his paintings now are sold for millions.  In fact, his painting, L’Allée des Alyscamps sold for 66 Million in 2015.  So bottom line is that no matter what, we should feel personal satisfaction just because we have a passion to express ourselves, not because of what others, including judges, determine about our art.

~Julie Ickes

Julie Ickes_Summer Flowers
“Summer Flowers” by Julie Ickes

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Sue Martin says:

    Excellent advice, Julie! And I’m so glad you started entering shows. Your work is beautiful and we all benefit from seeing it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Irene Rampton says:

    I believe you’ll inspire many members who have yet to enter, to do so now. Your message is exactly what so many of us need to hear. Thank you for your heartfelt words of wisdom and experience!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Vaughn Emett says:

    Yep, I find myself trolling for excuses not to finish a painting, especially when a piece is going well. I just know the next stroke I lay down is going to ruin it. So I look for anything to justify not going back to it. But until I read your message I imagined this was a personality trait of mine, and I was the only one who did it. Thanks for you thoughtful message, Julie.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.