Last night I wasn’t feeling good and ended up writing a rambling mess of twitter posts about my very real problems. Since this happened at night and some of you might’ve missed it… I thought that it might be a good idea to clean them up, reorganize them a little, and post them in a journal/blog format to make them a little more coherent.
Please be aware this will be talking about some very real and very personal problems that I am facing. If talking about my problems in my own journal is an issue for you, please leave now. For the rest of you… read on!
Being a creator is terrifying sometimes. Fear of failure or inability can crush your soul and prevent you from doing the things you love. Over the past 3 years I've been struggling with this fear. And a large portion of it comes from the very real threat of my so-called haters.
I have so much I want to do... And I can tell you right now that I often don't do them because of the fear of repercussions. Every single aspect of my life is being monitored, scrutinized, dissected, judged, and criticized. I'm genuinely scared to do anything. Every single day looming in the back of my mind is "how will these assholes react to what I've drawn/done?" That's not a healthy way to live.
The sad thing is that the majority of my "haters" actually do want me to get better or improve. But the way they communicate that is awful. Mistakes are how we learn and grow, but for me that's not even an option. Mistakes are failure states. Death threats. Personal safety issues
I'm terrified. I don't want to give up, but I can't improve if nothing I do is ever good enough. Criticism should inspire, not demotivate. And I think ultimately it's criticism from online communities that have hurt me the most. Feedback from peers is ok. Random strangers? No...
I don't handle criticism well. That's very true. You know what else is true? Criticism has never been motivational for me. When people point out mistakes and issues and dissect my work to pieces, that doesn't make me want to improve. It makes me wanna give up. Not everyone responds to criticism the same way. And I hate the way the Internet has "decided" what's acceptable ways to criticize.
I know for some people praise can give them a huge ego and there's fear that it will make them worse artists. But we're all different! There are so many different types of people, why is there only ONE way to criticize? Why can't we help people through praise and positivity? It's so bad that even when people DO praise me I don't see it. I can't focus on positives ‘cuz I'm terrified of what repercussion I'll suffer.
To make it worse, depression, anxiety, and other health issues make giving up unbelievably easy & safe. Can't hurt me if I don't do anything. I'm diagnosed with mental health issues. I take medication to combat them. I go to therapy. I avoid friends and family. Because of haters. They have taken away the joy and love and fun I use to have creating art. They've changed who I am as a person, mostly for the worse. Criticism is important for any artist to grow. But not like this. Not this way. This is damaging in ways I never could've imagined.
I know my haters are watching. I know they'll scoff at everything I've said. Fuck them. Why should I care about people who don't appreciate me? They've only succeeded in one thing: Scaring the shit out of me to the point that I've developed mental health problems. Fuck them. The worse part is these haters are so smug and arrogant, they'll dismiss everything I say and can't imagine that their actions caused this. Heaven forbid these people take responsibility for causing their "victim" to develop mental health psychoses, right?
I am not a great artist. Never thought I was. But I'm not shit. And I can learn to improve. But it has to be on my own terms, not theirs. One of the things I've done to help myself is to move away from DeviantArt. It’s one of the best things I've ever done for myself. I love the idea of DA, and I've gained so many fans and genuinely awesome friends through that site. But lately it's been a crutch for me…
That's why lately I've been working towards revamping my art sites, moving to twitter, and doing tons of freelance instead of my own comics. I'm also working on setting up a Patreon so I can move away from doing freelance and to start working for people/fans who genuinely WANT to support me. Self care is so very important and I think I’m finally at the point where I can focus on doing just that.
I'm gonna get better. I'm gonna work through this. And those haters and harassers? I don't need them. I can live without them.
I'm sorry 'bout the wall of text. I had a lot of stuff I needed to get off my chest. Sorry for the outburst, but thanks for letting me vent. I don't say this enough but I really should. My fans are amazing and so unbelievably supportive. Thank you so much, guys! And especially a HUGE thank you to those who have helped me grow and become a better person in general. So very much appreciated!
Listening to: Podquisition
Watching: Book of Life
Playing: Marvel Puzzle Quest
Drinking: Decaf. Tea. Earl Grey. Hot.