Friday, December 15, 2017

Making of a Maker - Please Give It Time - Third Friday Post - December 15th

Ok so. . . most things I've done in my life, creatively,  felt like they came naturally to me.

Sculpting however, was NOT one of those things.  Not with sculpting clay, not with polymer clay and not with ceramic or porcelain.

I just was not very good at all when I began.

Given the multitude of other things I could have turned to, things I already had a fair capacity to do creatively, it might seem surprising that I stuck with sculpting at all.

I am so glad I did.

When I am asked advice about being a maker-of-things for a living, the first piece of advice I offer is to stick with it. "Please give it time" I'll say.  I know the frustration of the inner critic who's always sitting on your shoulder and telling you you can't do it, you won't ever be good enough. But you CAN. And you WILL.

In time.

I think many people give up way to easily on their creative desires, wishes and dreams. If you're doing something you love, something you've always wanted to do or just something you saw and were inspired to try for yourself, then just keep at it because you'll get better each time you do it, I promise!

You won't even realize it because it's a lot of little steps of progression that get us to the place we want to be. Only looking back in time can I see the growth by comparison. Even now, 7 years later, I still learn something new with each piece I create! A new technique, a new way to get a hippo's ear or a fairy house's rooftop to look just right. I expect that I will continue to learn and develop my skills for as long as I keep working at it and coming up with new ideas to try.

And when I say just keep at it, keep making,  I mean make A LOT! Repetition, honing skills and evolving your ideas, it's all going to pay off in the end. Though it might not be in the way you hoped or, as I did, you may end up going down roads you never dreamed of only to discover that those roads take you to a place where you are happier than you've ever been.

Then, one day, you get to look back at the first things you made/ sold and something recently that you sold and compare them. If you're like me, you'll shake your head and laugh because we all started somewhere. . .

Here, for you to see, was my sculpture starting point. A Bast statue made 7 1/2 long years ago. My first. . .  and that Bast did sell, surprisingly enough.

I had not developed any of the skills, the patina processes, detailing, a way of working out the stylizations or the techniques that allowed me to create the blue patina Bast right below it.  That's where seven years of making, working on it every single day, came in.

This is the first Bast statue I ever made and sold back in 2010. 

And this is the most recent one I've sold. Seven and a half long years later.
Next month I want to dive into talking about the one aspect of online selling that I always felt I had going for me. . . packaging.

Thank you, as always for dropping by!

 Keep making!!


  1. I love seeing the difference in these two sculptures! But I like the first one as well. I agree though, nothing works as well as just putting in the time and creating. I am slightly embarrassed by my earliest paintings now.

    And I figured out my commenting problem.... something to do with chrome and cookies and I have no idea what I did but I clicked on some setting that seemed to make a difference... prior to messing with it , it wouldn’t let me comment on my own blog either. All fixed now.

    1. Andrea, having to look at if several times since creating this, I sort of like that first cat sculpture too. I was afraid to go so far back and look at that earliest work after so many years but it inspired me to write this post. Glad to see your commenting issue is fixed! YAY! Welcome back. :)

  2. Excellent post Nicolas! Very wise words! You are so right about everything! Thanks for showing us both statues! I love seeing the difference in both of them! I have to admit, I love your first statue too! When I look at my first paintings, I laugh! LOL!
    Big Crow Hugs!

    1. Hi Stacy! I suppose those early creations did have their own charm, which I see, and which I DO love. In fact, it's funny how a few people refer to the earliest work I did when they are requesting a piece and I never know how to explain that I can't reproduce them like that now because they were made the way they were then from a lack of skill/ability when I was finding my way! :)
      Big Crow Hugs!!

  3. What an excellent and inspiring post. I think your beginning was still quite beautiful, it has that spark of youness in it. Thank you for sharing your lovely thoughts.

    1. Thank you Lisa! I appreciate you taking the time to drop by and for your own lovely thoughts and comments! :)

  4. I am not an artist though or may be in a way that i make my house a "home" but yes either i am fed up with the one who always yell at me for whatever i do and try to upset me all the time ,this is grace of God that i have overcome him and can almost control him to just keep his mouth shut and let me do what i am doing in my way and this courage gives me the look at my past and my recent way of living which seems to improve spiritually .

    I absolutely loved reading you Nicolas and agree that we should not be coward out of inner fears and doubts but must stay resolute and unshaken to push back all the negativity and keep focusing on our targets ,constant dropping over stone can make hole in the stone so regular efforts can bring impossible to possible as practice makes the perfect having said

  5. sorry forgot to mention that your first and recent pieces of art are magnificent !

    recent one has more clear and strong expressions though ,marvelous job!

  6. DEar Nicolas, everythign you write here is so true....except for perhaps, ha, music if you simply can't sing or write music. Of all the cretive gifts, I wish I could sing and write musicbut I really truly can't--not like Alexandra who does both beautifully! She too has honed her skill of illustration and had grown so much even in the last few years. It is astounding but then again, maybe not, if you do it every you. :)