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I have certainly gotten my share of rejection letters since I first started to enter juried shows in 2002. There is one show that I’ve entered at least seven times and each year always get the rejection letter.
But I do not make excuses. I do not blame the judges. I do not tell myself “It’s all subjective”. And I do not scream and throw things (although that might be kind of fun). It is just the juror’s choice and I should be a grown up and accept and move on. Although sometimes, it always baffles me especially when I visit the show and observed those that got accepted in. Human nature is to compare and then doubt yourself, and then get sad or mad whichever could come first, but over time... it is just part of the journey.
I feel sometimes that my work is not too risqué, or out there, or perhaps just too predictable. I was even contemplating, showing work with real meat, so that it could rot and get maggots and call it a true living art of decay. But seriously sometimes, I just do not know what jurors are looking for at this day and age.
It is true that only so many pieces get accepted and sometimes your piece was just the odd one out. But it does hurt, rejection hurts. And so, I start again, pick up my broken heart (ego) and try again.
You are not alone; everyone gets their share of rejection and I know it should be used as a way of challenging yourself to continuously strive for artistic excellence. (whatever that could be). Every rejection should be considered as a challenge to yourself, to continue to strive for higher artistic skill and excellence.
So always set goals and create work every day, strive for the best you can do with every new work, to reach 100% of your personal artistic growth. Pick yourself up and dust yourself off. Be brave and be bold. Who cares if you got rejected (yet again) when deep inside, you know, you gave it your best! And I know, I did.
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