It’s Cold Without My Security Blanket

Sorry I’ve been a slacker this week. I usually try to update on Monday, but this last Monday I used my regular blogging time to work on my illustration in process. I should probably be doing the same today, but my poor neglected blog was calling to me. I don’t want it to think that I don’t love it!

I keep forgetting to mention this, but I actually had my first portfolio review recently. You wouldn’t think that someone who blogs, i.e. plasters their soul all over the World Wide Web, would be shy about sharing their work with complete strangers, but ironically, I am. There’s something of a security blanket in the soft glow of the computer monitor and the knowledge that there is no “tight” connection between you and the avatars of distant cyber friends. Real people don’t glow, and they look you in the face with real eyes. And they don’t speak in emoticons.

A couple of weeks ago, a professional illustrator, Mike Laughead, paid a visit to our humble university and offered to do portfolio reviews for a few of the art students. The first time around, I confidently slid the sign-up sheet past myself to my neighbor. Then, I felt guilty for letting opportunity pass me by.

I’m a master of the self guilt trip. If you ever want anything from me, just make me feel guilty. I’ll cave.

I put my name in the first slot of the day. Since Mr. Laughead wouldn’t have seen any other portfolios before mine, I figured he wouldn’t have anything to compare it against (especially if it turned out to be the worst of the bunch). Although everyone assured me I had nothing to be nervous about, I wanted to curl up in the fetal position. That’s another good reason to sign up in the morning: less time with your head between your knees.

The review went well. I showed Mr. Laughead my work, and we chatted about what I needed to do to get into my desired field. He had a few helpful critiques, and I was pleased that he seemed to like the style I am currently developing. It was encouraging that he found the style especially unique, and he advised me to keep working with it.

Overall? Good experience.

How shy are you about sharing your work? Do you like feedback? Who do you show your work to? Do you find it rewarding, or nerve-wracking? I’d like to hear your thoughts.



  1. That’s great news! I’m glad your review went well. I used to feel funny about sharing my work until I did the MFA program and had to share it all the time. It does get easier. Especially if you get good feedback like you did.


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