The Test – Sharing Your Writing

Shoup, Lynda Diane. Work in Progress. 2017, Private Collection of the Artist.

So you write that artist statement, that biographical material, the descriptions of your pieces, or whatever it may be. At some point, you have to stop writing and put it to the test. This isn’t easy. 

We’re a little too close to our work. Too close to the process, never mind the product. So sometimes we can’t be objective. 

Or, like me, we worry. We overthink every sentence. Wonder if we can really claim what we have written. 

Am I right? 

In writing my own artist statement I fell into danger of being always in the state of becoming and never arriving. 

It is time. 

The advice I have read over and over is have other people read your statement and judge give feedback. As a school library teacher, we called this “peer review”. 

There are several things that can happen. Your reviewer can affirm you. Your reviewer can ask for clarification. Your reviewer can see something they didn’t before. Your reviewer can also tell you if your statement doesn’t match what they experience looking at your work. It’s all good. 

So this week, I have put my statement out into the world and await feedback. It’s a vulnerable state to be in. It’s also exciting because it means forward motion. 

Shoup, Lynda Diane. The Path of Enlightenment. 2017, Private Collection of the Artist.

I’ll let you know how it goes. 

Have you written about your art? How do you feel about that finished product? Did you ask for feedback before finalizing your statement? Let me know in the comments. 

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  1. I have written about my art and I've felt OK — I guess I never labored over it too much. Showed it to a friend to see if I was on the right track and there I was. I admire your journey. You're far more disciplined at it than I!

  2. Thanks, Jeanie! You are so kind. I'm glad you did labor over your writing. If things worked out well, why fix something that isn't broken?

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