An Artists Relationship With Their Art

Emotional Attachment: An Artist’s Relationship With Their Art – #2

I have personally gone through times when I was very emotionally attached to my art, for various reasons; some were pieces that I invested a lot of emotional energy into, some I can look at today and still vividly recall the emotional place I was in when I made it. I’ve been on both the depressed end, and the manic end, of the emotional spectrum and though I created a lot of work when I was manic I was not nearly as emotional as when I created work when I was depressed. The last year I’ve been in a much more balanced place and have learned to let go of the emotional attachments to my art. I don’t feel bad about my art going out into the world, I’ve let that emotional attachment go.

I would love to hear your answer to the question “Are you emotionally attached to your art?” Post your answer in the comments below.

Are you emotionally attached to your art?

Vas Littlecrow: Art is communication, much like the words I write or speak.  It is not a person or a living being, so it’s hard for me to get emotionally attached to my art.  Having said that, I put a lot of emotional investment into creating my art.  The process often matters more than the end product. –


Delisa Carnegie: Yes, especially my writing, art journals & paintings. They are pieces of me laid out for everyone to see.  –


Charlene Slimp: Absolutely! Every piece of art I create captures a little piece of me in it. All of it expresses where I was, what I was going through, and what was on my mind. You can tell a lot by looking through my Flickr stream, which is all in chronological order. When I’ve been down and depressed, there are gaps where there is no art. That’s how I can tell when I really need to do something. But every photo I’m invested in and I wish I could explain in words what makes each piece unique and amazing, but I can only hope that through my photography I am able to communicate that. –


Kesha Bruce: Once I’ve finished creating a work, the emotional attachment ends there.  At that point it’s actually more effective and productive for me to be able to step back from it emotionally and make hard decisions about whether it meets my intentions or whether it’s a successful piece. –


Abigail Markov: The actual paintings – only rarely, and no more than I expect most people can be to works of art that carry a particular significance to them. Most of my paintings I end up not liking all that much, so I would suspect that to contribute some to being attached to them or not. There are pieces I just LIKE, and those I get attached to, like I would my coffee cup or favorite jeans. Granted, I am extraordinarily critical of my own work, and if I accurately got down what I wanted – more so than most other people would be. I am my own worst critic, and work with that to improve and grow. –


Tori Deaux: It depends on the particular piece. Some of my work is deeply meaningful, and it’s very hard to sell or even display those pieces (although I have).  But over time, I have come to see them as separate from me.  As corny as it sounds, they’re metaphorical children that have to be allowed to grow up and move away.  I think that the process of creating my work is sort of like watching the concept “grow up” and maybe that helps with letting go of the final work just a bit. –

I would love to hear your answer to the question “Are you emotionally attached to your art?” Post your answer in the comments below.

Join us next week as we delve deeper into our relationships with our art!

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  2. Alvin Black III

    Im recovering from precious art syndrome.
    When I did oil painting I worked really slowly and definitely felt some kind of way about showing my work to other people, because it was personal.
    Now my process involves a lot more…iteration i guess you can say. Changed medium to pastel about a year 1/2 ago. Ive done about 400 figure sketches and about 50 paintings in that time(more than I have ever done in that space of time), and have posted them all up on fb, twitter, or my site.
    I think doing a lot more work has allowed me to be a lot less attached to any particular piece. I have a lot more ideas to work through…

    1. Emily Rose

      Thank you for your reply Alvin. I also have so many ideas to work through, I just need time to do them all. :) I’m glad that by doing more and more work you have been handling the emotional attachment better. It does get easier the more work you produce and the more of it that goes out into the world. Keep at it!

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  4. Becky Joy

    I agree with Kesha. It’s all about the experience of painting, not the end results. When I first started painting, it was hard to give up a painting. Now, when I’m finished, I’m done and thinking about the next. I do not hang on to any painting. I sending out my best ones makes me work harder for the next “best one”.

    1. Emily Rose

      Becky Joy, I am so glad to hear from you. Kesha has definitely helped me see so many new ways of looking at art and the creation process. Since I’ve started selling more and more of my art it’s becoming a joy to sell my art and I no longer want to hold on to it.

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