The Value of Putting Something Aside

PHOTO(1)_cropI wrote a children’s story, and revised it countless times. It went through so many changes that it could have been ten different stories. I finally felt that it was the clearest and most creative effort that I could do. I sent it off to an agent and put it aside for three weeks.

Yesterday I took it out again. When I read it after being away from it for weeks, I saw it in a completely different light. Places to pare down the descriptions and reduce the text were obvious. Tweaks needed here and there.

I don’t think that this is a case of not ever being satisfied. I have had many experiences with releasing a sculpture and enjoying the result. Yet, there are times when putting something aside benefits both the work and me. I come back to it with a new perspective and am able to peel away more layers to get to the core of the work…its intrinsic truth.

In sculpting, I believe that if you take away something and don’t miss it, then you didn’t need it in the first place. It’s the same with all art forms. Sometimes it takes walking away and returning with a fresh eye and renewed energy to illuminate the natural flow and universal appeal of the work.

Next week I’ll talk about the inspiration for one of my sculptures.

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