You read a lot about artists and the impostor syndrome, this crippling and persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”. There are even monthly workshop to help them deal with it.
I am no authority on the subject, and I’m not sure what happened to me last week qualifies as a bout of impostoritis, but I have been downright mean to myself. Kicking really hard. And everything that came my way was a reason to kick harder.
For example, MadeHereMN gallery coordinator sent a group email asking for “high quality pictures” of the art pieces participants are working on. Pretty normal stuff. You’d think. But I started flipping out: that was it. I was going to be exposed as a fraud. Because I couldn’t possibly send good enough pictures. Because every picture I take looks amateurish. Because I am NOT an artist. (OUCH!)
The curating team did not “like” my last Instagram post? Flipping out even more. They KNEW. They finally realized my project is not worthy of their attention. (re-OUCH!)
And so on and so forth, for about ten days.
Then something happened. A combination of friends asking how the project was doing, how they could help, generous people working hard to plan a party to celebrate the launch of my project, encouraging family messages…
So much kindness from people around me. And none from myself. Things had to change.
Maybe I’m an impostor, maybe not. But I can be a bit kinder to myself, and kick a little less.