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"The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else's highlight reel" 

There's so much truth in this quote.

I can remember signing up to this website quite a number of years ago. I used to be among the best artists at school, but compared to most artists here... I absolutely sucked!
So I guess I did the thing that most people do when they first publish their shit on the world wide web and realize they aren't nearly as good at they thought they are; I got depressed and ragequit art for a while. Then I got back to drawing and lamented the fact that I wasn't among those insanely talented people (which, admittedly, I sometimes still do XD).

The funny thing is that I created entire scenario's in my head about those 'art idols'. About how amazing it would be that they could draw anything they want. About how people would naturally flock around them because they had skills. About how they earned big bucks by selling their art. About how good it must feel to have millions of people tell you you're awesome every single day. About how popular they must be and how easy it must be for them to make friends, find a relationship... and all that stuff. And of course about how they would never EVER answer my messages because my art sucked and they probably thought I was a loser of some sort.

It's funny how we think all of that bullshit is true, while in reality most of it isn't. 

Just like television, social media presents us with images that are only partly true. We show the highlights, but not the lows. We show the most amazing artworks we make, but not the countless of failed sketches we threw away, or the hundreds of boring practice exercises we did in order to even get to that point. We show the days that we're inspired to draw and do well, but we don't show the days that we feel depressed and want to quit art because we feel like we'll never improve.

It would be a sobering experience people did that, though.

Over time I've received some of the 'art idol' messages that I used to send my art idols years ago. It weirds me out somewhat.
To think that people send me messages they want to be like me (Believe me, you don't), that they assume I can draw anything (I wish I could), that they assume everybody likes me (You can never ever please everybody, keep that in mind) and my whole life is freaking amazing just because I can draw (Again, nope... sorry guys -- I do have fun while making art, though). And perhaps the worst of 'em; that I don't answer their messages because I think lowly of them (Seriously... you should just SEE the massive backlog my inbox has these days XD)

What I wanted to say, is to take the above quote to heart.

If you want to compare yourself to anyone, compare the current you to the former you. Because nobody knows you, your life and your personal circumstances better than you do. 
If you're doing better than before, congrats! You're on the right path. If not, then get to work and make sure that you will! :huggle:

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srg1 Featured By Owner May 21, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is very good. I love the Iceberg illusion It really shows what its all about!
zigzagoon1014 Featured By Owner May 5, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
That was wonderful! You should be a motivational speaker
khaleesinotprincess Featured By Owner May 3, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I love this!
SkekKel Featured By Owner May 3, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
This is so true that it hurts. Thank you for the motivation and encourage.
Brandor-cat Featured By Owner May 3, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That there is a fine statement.  Good job helping even those of us who've been around too long to remember what it is we're really trying to accomplish.  Thanks for your nugget of wisdom!
LadyElasa Featured By Owner May 2, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for this. So encouraging.
wurdsalad Featured By Owner May 2, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you for this.
Laurentiusje Featured By Owner May 1, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I find myself guilty of this. Some of my art, I am so proud of. But not a single comment...
Elfiore Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2016  Student Digital Artist
thanks  for that, so true :hug:
SailingNearSeaside Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2016  Professional Traditional Artist
I think we compare ourselves and others too often instead of just being who we are, ''real.'' ✌ 
givannibird Featured By Owner Apr 27, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
HeathWalsh Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2016
Haha, your first bit was so me, I thought I could never get better, and it actually stopped me from creating for a while... I still look at art and sadly wish I was that good, but now I tell myself to stop and I go draw and draw and try new things and do studies until I forget that feeling because I'm having to much fun!:w00t: Compared to the artist I was, I've really grown, and I will continue to do so!

The artists I look up to are all just like me, they worked hard and likely freaked out about not being good enough, and likely many still are freaking out! I think no matter how good we become, we will always see a new horizon that we haven't reached.

Thank you again for your always uplifting journals!:aww:
AyuPhoenix Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you... This is mighty helpful. :heart: :hug:
Relic-Angel Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh wow. Major confidence boost. :w00t!: Thanks for putting this out there. :heart:
kaisakuris Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
good text, very well written and very inspirational, thank you! Hug 
ChicaXtoybonnie Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you...also thx for the llama! 3D Llama Badge 
AlishaTano Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
Silent cry  I... I really needed this today. If I go a full day without sighing enviously about at least ONE amazing piece of art I see, I'd be shocked.

This was a nice reminder that they're all human too... thank you for this, Damai! 
PolymerWantACracker Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This was what I needed to hear today.
ArtloidMinori Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
*cries* this is really inspiring thank you so much, i have to be reminded almost every day about this, i feel like falling down but i hope i can do great things now that i read this thank you once again :D
Eternal-turns-magic Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2016  Student Traditional Artist
So true! Thanks for sharing this! I'm facing a lot of self doubt these days, and it's nice to be reminded this :) :heart: cheers!
HaruKuCha Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2016  Student Digital Artist
That is so true though.. I've been thinking something like that awhile ago, but thankfully, I saw this article.Llama Emoji-23 (Shyness) [V1]  
Now this really encouraged me Hug  Heart 
Whimsical-Wings Featured By Owner Edited Apr 17, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I use my self-hate in my favor, to an extent. I see so many artists around me content with where they are and never really STRIVING to improve. I don't want to be like that, but I do think I push myself a little too much... I recently finished a piece that I was actually REALLY proud of, I saw a lot of mistakes and areas to improve, but I was SO happy with it. As I was submitting it cursed DA gave me examples of other airbrushed art from this site.
I was crushed.
Once again, I felt the insane driving urge to improve because I wasn't good enough. A part of me knows that I will never be good enough.
But I can always keep trying, and I always will... But I don't want to only compare myself to my old art, I've seen that I can improve, but I need to be challenged by other artist's who have freakishly amazing art skills...

Anyways, if I think about this too much I'm going to get upset and find myself unable to draw again.
Keep on making art all you people out there! God bless.
minionofdoom Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2016  Student Digital Artist
i feel the same i made a journal thingy about this
Misaki-onee-san Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
the way you feel before the improvement i feel right now the same thing
i feel like i never improve cause it is so hard to find the right way and the right way to do it
and i to feel like i bother all those good artists with my stupid questions i must be seen as some kinda loser with my crappy art

i sometimes get fake fanmail people tell me they like my art or watch me and then in a view days later they have unwatch me or i never hear from them again
i am thinking about making a journal about it cause i hate people who lie to me just be honest you like my art? or you totally hate it?
just be honest with me geez i hate people sometimes
Xantair Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Omg it so good to know that other people struggle with this problem, too. T__T I feel so demotivated to do anything because I think I know that I suck anyway. ;'( I mean not just drawing. I want to start studying physics so I can work at a space scientists one day and meanwhile want to apply to an agency so I work as one of those people who just stand in the background in films. But I feel so paralyzed by the thoughts that I won't make it anyway. :'( a close friend of mine has one of those lifestyle blogs, it's called sur la lune, and she has loads of followers and the blog is really cute and amazing. And when she told me that she struggled with the problem you mentioned, too I first realized that I do, too. (Before I just thought I am a loser and that's it) and now you tell me about this too. So I think we should always tackle this problem together and stand together. The whole community. :)) !!!!!!! Lot's of love to you all ! Xanny
Mo0nstarus Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for sharing these words of wisdom :huggle:
I've been struggling with the same insecurities for a while now, and it really has eaten away at my motivation to create. I've always felt that there was something lacking in my life, this desire to have something that I can call truly call my own, and drawing has helped fill that missing hole. I could put to paper whatever I imagined! But with so many ideas swirling around in my head, it was hard to come to terms that, where I'm at right now, I couldn't express those ideas clearly or as exactly as I pictured them to be. And it was so...very...frustrating! 
It only got worse whenever I saw the works of those who could, seemingly, conjure up whatever they had in mind in exact detail like it was nothing. I couldn't help seeing, in their art, what I felt was lacking in my own. In time, I came to the same conclusion that I should focus on myself...but I never knew how difficult it was to not compare :faint: 
So when I came upon this journal by chance, it knocked back some sense into my silly brain. I definitely intend to focus more attention on myself than others, and hopefully, someday, I'll be able to see my ideas come to life the way I've always imagined them to be :D I'll most certainly refer to this whenever I catch myself feeling mopey, so thank you again~! <3 
MarionetteKuromi Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
I get the point. I idolize some artists even though they're not perfect. Ironically, I sometimes idolize people I hate. But the important thing is to keep improving.
Sranna Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
wow you are amazing
PeanutButterSlime Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2016  Hobbyist Filmographer
that is so true. for all those people out there who believe they'll never be as good as their idols, all you need to do is try.
Nhoa-D-Brown Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Man...After reading this it really reminded me of the same exact thing I usually did back in 2015. I always wondered why no one really worried about those who are like, trying to get there. But yet people always flock to those who are already there. Know what I mean? I still kind of do it sometimes getting mad and also getting a bit sad inside. But I even told myself about having some doubts. What happens if I do make it to where I want to be, but end up similar to how 'art idols' are? Like many people coming to you at once, or dealing with the same nonstop comments and questions etc. I sometimes worry about that and it does make me wonder about how many great talented artists feel. For me I don't want a career in drawing of being famous. I just really want to be successful and have enough money to take care of the people that may need my help one day (Mainly family that is). I try to keep myself from always comparing to others and this year I do really plan to focus on just ME. I am glad you were able to make this. If anything if I got have the tendency to compare once again I'll come back here and reread this journal as much as I can. I'm really glad you wrote this because after reading it, it really helped me. I was feeling a bit down just now, but luckily it was a good thing I just saw this and clicked. Keep up the good work for inspiring people and helping them out! And the iceberg you did is REALLY, and I mean REALLY accurate to what you said. It is like again as I said: People only worry about those who already have it good. But not too many or nobody wants to worry about those who are working hard to get the good. Know what I mean? But Overall I want to say that this is really helpful to me, and I'll make sure to always reread it in case my brain tried to compare once again. 
Thumbs Up +fav hug 
mikethemainartist Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
True, true. I think that many creative souls cross these bridges at some time or another.
AlexaDream Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Now that's called a motivation! Thank you so much! :hug:
Anselnaut Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You've motivated me ever since i found out about you, thank you. I'd love to give you a hug :hug:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amarynceus Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2016  Professional General Artist
Get out of my head!

Seriously though, nice summation of thoughts I've had myself whilst accepting the fact that I will never be one of those shining stars.  :D

We show the highlights, but not the lows. We show the most amazing artworks we make, but not the countless of failed sketches we threw away, or the hundreds of boring practice exercises we did in order to even get to that point. We show the days that we're inspired to draw and do well, but we don't show the days that we feel depressed and want to quit art because we feel like we'll never improve.

This is exactly why, upon my return to wrestling with the muse again after a multi-year absence from dA, I've embarked on a daily drawing challenge. Pick an idea, draw it, sign it, post it, all within an hour or so, every day, for at least a thousand days.  Post it even if it sucks.  For someone who spends forever and a day on projects, often never finishes things, and (usually) only shows the most carefully polished results, it's a frightening thing to do.  Revealing the artist one actually is, versus the image of an artist that one consciously or unconsciously projects, is a little... discomforting.   
AtlanticMadMan Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2016  Student General Artist
AMEN w00t! 
Ikeofthedusk Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2016  Student Artisan Crafter
True. I agree with you.
It was a great text ! 
The iceberg is also great !
Have a nice day !
ludicrousLemon Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That iceberg is amazing and I love it, so true..
AlexBarboo Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2016
Totally agreed whit it.
Most people needed this as an article to learn from
Thanks u
daviddekleer Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Nice article!!! :-)
RitellianCaptain Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
I must say, you are an amazing person! :)
wannabebetter Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2016  Student General Artist
olgameola Featured By Owner Edited Apr 8, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Wonderful article :) I liked it! Clap 
I think many people have feelings and certain stages, which are shown on your picture. I too often have it all. But the love of drawing overcomes these hurdles. We really rarely think about the fact that people put into their work a lot of work. It seems to us that everything comes to them easily. But it really isn't. So the conclusion is: we should not compare yourself with others. We are all unique. Everyone should do their favorite thing and then success is sure to come ;) (Wink) 
acidicfeline Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
i feel like this is a friendly reminder every artists needs 
Radaq Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Damn, sum strong words Bruh...
thanks for them tho.
Milica-Dj Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I'm so happy you shared this with us :D This absolutely encouraged me to keep trying and be persistant till I reach where I wanne be. And by the way, I also thought EXACTLY same thoughts about famous artists, like you, and still kinda do. But I see that they didn't just become famous out of nowhere, there has been put hundreds of hours until they reached that point. 
Thank you for encouragement <3
SlyeYce Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016
right in the kokoro ...
artyminer Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Student General Artist
thank you so much for the support. this is the greatest motivation I have found so far. thank you for being a good associate; might even call you a good friend.
Claptrapclass Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Hobbyist
This is so true except I'm only starting the long endless journey to success to the degree where I'm happy with what I do
Mukaawa Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2016  Student General Artist
Me too. There is more of us then there are of people like yuumei or sakamichan but that doesn't mean we're less then them. That just means we haven't found are style yet. We will all get there some day.
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