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The Dark Side of Crafting for Public Consumption

There’s a lot of great things about having a creative job in the crafts industry. Most people tend to focus on them when asked about their jobs in this industry. Few of us acknowledge the darker side of being publicly creative: unsolicited criticism. It can come in the form of web comments, emails, forum posts, or social media or blog entries…but you can be guaranteed that it will come.

Learning how to handle that, how to develop a thick skin, is an important part of having a career in a creative field, be it crafting, architecture, dance – or photography. It’s from the field of photography that I want to bring you a wonderful lesson on how to sort through this criticism to find the nuggets of gold, and how to hold your head high in the face of it. It comes from the online show The Grid, a production of KelbyTV, which is hosted by well-known photographers Scott Kelby and Matt Kloskowski.

On last week’s episode #141, which they called “The Power of the Unsolicited Critique”, Matt and Scott talked at length about hearing that a photographer that they admire was considering quitting after getting an email criticizing her work. Their advice to her was inspiring, uplifting and touching (Scott even teared up at one point) and was a powerful lesson for anyone working publicly in a creative space. It’s definitely worth the time to watch, even if you never use a camera at all.

We’ve set the video to start at 7:30 minutes into the show to get to the topic discussed here but please feel free to rewind and watch the entire video if you wish.

5 Responses to The Dark Side of Crafting for Public Consumption

  1. Nancy Grant May 7, 2014 at 11:01 pm #

    Thank you for posting this Nancy.

  2. onabona May 8, 2014 at 6:44 am #

    Almost didn’t want to give up the hour required but am I glad I did. Powerful stuff. Thanks for posting.

  3. tvoss123 May 8, 2014 at 12:42 pm #

    I watched it in pieces through the morning. It was completely worth watching. Thank you for posting this.

  4. Kathleen R May 8, 2014 at 3:31 pm #

    This is an awesome video! For my example, this last week, I posted myself in several dresses that I tried on – that I thought were pretty fabulous, btw – I thought it was a nice fashion show type thing. You wouldn’t believe the critiques – unsolicited – that I got back!! Luckily, I had shopped with a best friend and showed them to my sister (for solicited critiques) and heard how they liked them first. This is a mindshift for me – to not critique others (although true appreciation I think is great!) and to ask or not ask for critiques and to be very careful WHO I ask!!

  5. Sondra May 13, 2014 at 4:57 pm #

    Some people are just nasty. I am always amazed by the hateful comments on CARTOONS! Seriously, these are supposed to be funny. If you don’t get it, move on.

    Remember Thumper on Bambi? When asked what his father told him… “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all.”

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