My sincere thanks to John McCloskey, who mentioned a book to me on one of my blog posts (Slightly Better Day On The Painting Front), called 'Art & Fear' by Bayles and Orland. John quoted a few extracts from the book for me on the blog post and I found them spookily close to how I often feel when I sit down to paint. I am easily overtaken by a fear of failure and I usually end up going and making a cup of tea rather than getting down to any work.
As soon as I read some the quotes John put on my blog post, I promptly ordered the book from Amazon and I have to say it is a fascinating read and so very, very true. I began to think that Mr Bayles and Mr Orland had been reading my mail!
The books deals with all the fears, hang-ups, expectations and the problems in producing art and even having the confidence to feel justified in calling yourself a genuine artist, rather than feeling like a fake (guilty as charged here, m'lud).
The book has opened my eyes and given me some clarity and understanding about the role emotional and mental elements play in producing art. I am a mass of insecurities about painting so anything that clears some of that out of the way has to be a bonus.
I can't recommend the book too highly especially as I think that a lot of artists have a wobble now and then and it is encouraging to find out how you can mentally shake yourself out of it and see a clearer path. Intriguing.