It’s in short supply. Social media is full of opinions, but a lot of it seems to be engaged in bashing others’ existing ones.
It can make me reluctant to express mine. I have been afraid of publishing sometimes because I could be wrong. It has stopped me from writing.
But, like anything you choose to present to the world, vulnerability goes with the territory. Artists of every kind trade their feelings for exposure of their work. Not knowing if you’ll be lauded or excoriated is frightening.
Perhaps those are our choices: stay silent and safe, or publish and expose ourselves. Staying safe, however, doesn’t necessarily help the work. What we miss by staying safe is the possibility of more easily shaping, honing, and sharpening our work. If our work is only ever for ourselves, I suppose that’s fine. But if we want to say something, if we want to make others feel something, it’s much harder.
Doing everything in solitary feels like I’m navigating a city blindfolded. We need to show our work. Public opinion isn’t always valuable, but enough is that it can allow us to steer a truer course, tack a different course, or pick another star to follow.
Creation is always a balance between how we feel about it and how others receive it. Maybe it will help to focus on that, the balance, rather than the fear. To do otherwise gets nothing done, and keeps us from growing.
It’s okay to be wrong. Say things—with words or brushes or cameras. Say more tomorrow.