Which refers to both the great walls of artblock and the pain of being an artist. You NEED to paint. If can't paint, your in pain, because you want to overcome the obstacles that prevent you from doing what you need to do. Now think about this - you really love painting and the same thing hurts you the most, so you give it up or you're still struggling to regain your spark.
For the past 2-3 years, right after I painted some of my best works, I've been in artistic hell, seventh ring of fire. I put myself under the pressure to paint more, paint better and faster. I uploaded work after work and yes, I did improve. Until I turned into a dead end. Uploading for uploads sake, hungry for recognition. Yes, that. Not the give me all your comments kind of recognition, just recognition as an artist. What I wanted and what I still want is for someone to step up to me and tell me: I really liked your works, they mean something to me - you're doing great. And by those words I would know that I've gone the right path, that I've found my way. That from this point on, everything will be right, I would know what I want to do, what I will do in the next 5 years and that it feels right. To achieve that goal I started to expand my so-called network, I re-read tutorials, I painted some more and joined other galleries, submitted my works for critique and got hit by the "your stuff is boring"-hammer. I got near to zero constructive feedback.
I talked to other artists about this problem and I analyzed it to death day and night.
I am to far advanced in anatomy, colors and general painting techniques. People can't give me advice, because mistakes are less obvious in my drawings concerning those elements.
My drawings are plain boring. Not visually attracting enough, they don't stand out. My themes are clichée. Many others are competing with what I draw.
When I draw what I see, feel and need to draw, then I scare people away, because it's different from what they expect. I fail at creating a solid "fanbase" because my work isn't what can be called "popular". This is most evident when I draw something without worrying about.. OTHERS.
This is a downward spiral that keeps on dragging me down. I have no real goal, I feel I have failed without knowing where and when exactly. I care less and less about my art. I play WoW. Projects I hold dear get messed up and I try to change them, til somebody says: Yes, this is good, well done. Get it? I. AM.TOTALLY.CONFUSED.
I do not know what to do. I really don't. I KNOW that whatever I whish is more or less right in front of me, but I can't see, touch, feel or smell it. It doesn't help me.
How the f***** hell can trying to be and do what you want be so damn hard.