Failure has happened to me more times than I can remember. In fact, I'm going through a very frustrating failure patch right now. With two pieces of art from my new series under my belt, I've moved on to the third piece, Secret Love Affair, and have hit a brick wall. Everything I do just looks terrible. I really thought I'd got to the stage of nailing my style but clearly not. My style is new to me and still at the early stages of figuring out how all the elements need to be made, photographed to bring it all together. It is hard to accept that my current level of expertise certainly is nowhere near where it needs to be to achieve what I want to achieve in my head, so everything I do right now is an epic failure.
I can only talk from experience on the subject of failure, whether that makes me an expert on failure I don't know. But what I have learned is that there is an art in failing and that is to recognise whether to stick with something because it's just a case of smoothing off rough edges to make everything fit, or changing direction completely because the pieces are never going to fit together.
Failing multiple times but picking yourself up, dusting off, and setting off again can lead to success as long as you can figure out the correct path to take when you start to fail. Bashing square pegs into round holes too long is never worth pursuing, so if we can figure out the correct path and have enough will and patience to practice, success can be built out of the flames of failure. Very few people have natural talent, most of us have to earn it through determination, practice, and learning from our failures. So if like me you are deep in a puddle of failure, sleep on it and then the next day follow what you already know deep down. Deep down you know if something is working or not, so follow your own advice no matter how hard it may be to let go.
Over the past few days, I've been working to develop a style that would work well with my lighter images but would also sit well with the darker images in The Robin's Cage series. This is a very rough idea thrown together without thought of composition or story, just working layer by layer to slowly bring to the surface what I see in my mind. Still, lots of work to do but this is certainly the direction in style and technique that is right for me.
It took a lot of thought and lots of edits and research, but finally, I have developed a technique for my lighter artwork pieces that I am happy with. There is much perfecting to do but the struggle was so worth it.
After months of work figuring out how to fit all the pieces together for the story of 'Secret Love Affair', it is almost ready for official release. With just a few watercolors elements to be painted and editing tweaks, I hope to be finished in less than a week.
The symbolism within this artwork is huge and it will be difficult to know where to start, but the story begins with our disconnection to nature and how we are misinterpreting what we see in the natural world. The story continues in other artworks throughout the rest of the series.