I heard this concept today. I quite liked the idea. It was said of a popular artist today who had written a book and took the time to critique his own work. They then started talking about how it was such a mature and humble thing to do. The reason he did it was to further clarify his work. It sounded like his work was misunderstood so he provided a critique so that it could be better understood.
I’m not sure what you think of this concept, but a few ideas stand out to me.
1. In order to critique your work, you have to have some work to critique. I’m not talking about a job, but fruits of labor. There are many people that can’t point to some of their work. Whether it’s a recording or an image that you painted to shot, having work first is quite an important piece in this endeavor.
2. One needs humility to critique their own work. It’s hard to do that and be critical, and you can only do so with security of self. Anyone can critique work – having the security to critique your own work – now that’s something else.
3. Do be able to create some masterful work and to be able to look back at it and gain insight or learn something completely different is phenomenal. Not only was it good enough work to share in the first place, it was such an incredible piece of work that it actually gives back – tremendous.
So the question is what work have you done? Are you able to critique your own work?
4 thoughts on “Critique Your Own Work”
In his book “The War of Art”. Stephen Pressfield talks about how if you want to be a professional in your field, criticism becomes necessary for survival. Criticism becomes impossible when our ego gets in the way. True artists become when they can let go of their art and create it for their own sake. And, then give it away without needing that overwhelming ego gratification.
that’s so good. i have that book. i should read it.
I’ve been thinking about this – for me I want to be brilliant, to take the gifts I have been given, and run with them. In essence to be the best me possible, as authentic to the nature I have been given, and to do this, I need criticism. I need feedback, so that I can get better, do better, work better, so that I can learn. What I find difficult is that so few people are willing to give real feedback, they wrap up their criticism in softness, or they don’t make any at all, paralysed by a fear of offending or upseting. I have found that I have become my own critic on many levels, because even when asked I have found it difficult to find people who give really good, constructive feedback or criticism, that does not follow their agenda.
I agree with what Mike is saying – that idea that those that need to create do so for its own sake – I know I do, I know that if I do not create, I die, and that when I create and put my work out there, I leave it open, but then once its out there, I wonder does it really belong to me anymore?
When we ask for criticism from others or from ourselves, we have to be aware that we are asking a question we might not like the answer to. Maybe the answer will cause us to defend are work, or maybe it will enable us to think on another plane, to consider a viewpoint that we hadn’t previously. EIther way we become more self aware. Sometimes we can critique our own work, but other times, having someone else look at makes all the difference. I think it is a two way process, but we need to be tough when we look at criticism because it can hurt, and sting, if it is given in the wrong manner, even when we do this ourselves.
I sometimes do write ups and design in various areas and actually criticize my own work, the only problem though is that i realized that if i criticize my own work sometimes i think less of my work because i have seen it so many times (through the process of perfecting it) so i get my parents or friends to criticize it too. But at the same time criticizing your own work is good if you stay truthful and secure, if someone has any specific opinion on my work i accept and embrace it because i know not everyone will agree with my work or like it, i do know though that a lot of people have opinions based on jealousy though or general insecurity, this means the person looking at your work may choose to dislike your work just because they dislike you as a person. Those type of people are not helping in truth, instead letting their insecurity and personal feelings/gain get in the way of being honest. The more we handle ourselves correctly and be honest to ourselves the better we can also handle others criticism and take it on board. I cant wait for the moment that someone gives me 4 stars instead of 5 so i know to improve 🙂 Great post btw, the people who escape humility or truth just avoid their own problems, the best way is to be honest and take it on the chin in every situation whether we believe the other to be right or wrong. Thanks for sharing 🙂