Question: Do you have piles of artwork/sketches/paintings that never get completed for fear that they can be improved as your art technique progresses?  I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t end up finishing many of my paintings because I don’t like the end result enough to want my name or brand tied to that painting if it ends up selling.  This is really hindering my progress as an artist lately and I am avoiding painting even from it.  Thank you for your time. Love, Nicky


I have had a personal rule for the past 5 years or so. Finish. Everything. 

Now, if the initial drawing comes out bad and I damage the paper, I may start over then. But other than that, even if it’s just a quick sketch. I finish it. About 10 years ago I kept starting paintings, getting bored and not liking the ugly stage (that EVERY painting or drawing goes through) and putting it to the side to finish later. I just recently moved and threw out about 4 or 5 unfinished paintings. I didn’t go back and finish them because by this point I’ve improved enough that it would be easier to start over than to try and fix all my mistakes on the old ones.

The sad thing is, because I didn’t finish those ones, I didn’t learn much from them other than to stop leaving works unfinished! Even though the finished product wouldn’t have been as good as what I could do now, I would have learned from the process. I lost out on that learning experience.

The thing is, art is a learning experience. We are all going to get better as we practice our skills. We will all have older less than perfect paintings throughout our entire lives. Put your name on those proudly! Don’t be ashamed of your artistic journey!! It is totally expected that what you’re creating today won’t be nearly as good as what you create in ten or twenty years. No one is going to judge you for that. The opposite will likely be the case where everyone will be excited to see how far you’ve come.