jack of all trades, expert at none (or why I can’t paint monkeys in space suits driving 1964 VW Bugs)

posted in: musings | 2

I’m interested in too many things. It’s a problem.

Why? Because everything you read about establishing your career in art gives the same advice: Focus, focus, focus. You should create work that’s instantly attributable to you and only you. If you paint, paint pictures of one thing. Painting cars? Not focused enough. Painting Volkswagens in acrylics? Still not focused enough. Painting 1964 VW Beetles driven by moneys in space suits in orange and green acrylic paint in an Art Noveau style? Possibly focused enough…but probably not.

I can’t do it. The problem, and one of my biggest fears, is that I just can’t focus that much. I want to do too much. I want to be good at EVERYTHING. And being good at the things I already know isn’t enough. I want to be BETTER. And even that isn’t enough. The list of things I want to get really good at keeps getting longer and longer, and I know that for every one thing that gets crossed off, two more (at least) will pop up to replace it.

The more you know, the more you realize what you DON’T know. And WANT to know. And HAVE TO know. It’s very easy for me to see how people could spend their entire careers as academics. I honestly love acquiring knowledge. I would be a professional student, if I didn’t need to have things like….oh….food and shelter.

So, here’s the list of everything that I want to be amazing at. Some of them I’m already pretty decent at, some I dabble in but want to get better, and some of them I’ve never even tried. I figure if I just get the list down, and out into the universe….that’s a start.

  • Glass blowing
  • Stained glass
  • Video editing
  • Photoshop
  • Silk Screening
  • Oil painting
  • Acrylic painting
  • Photography
  • Cake decorating
  • Ceramics
  • Interior decorating
  • Metalworking/jewelrymaking
  • Animation

2 Responses

  1. Alphonse Mucha is one of my favorite artists. He designed money, jewelry,furniture,stained glass, as well as paintings, and had some commercial success. He was, however, best known for his images of women, with flowing hair, and a circle motif.
    I think you can have a wide range of designs and still create something iconic. Good luck. =)

  2. I didn’t recognize his name, so I googled some of his work. Turns out that some of it was familiar, but I never knew the name of the artist. Beautiful stuff…thanks for sharing!