I have a love/hate relationship with social media.
I love the ability to be inspired by artists all over the world. To instantly see what has been happening in the lives of my friends and loved ones. To peek into the lives of people I look up to and see all the amazing things they create and do. It can be great motivation to push myself harder and to start creating better work of my own.
Yet, the downfall with social media is its one-sided. I never really see when my favorite artist tries to do a drawing and decides to start over. Instead, its just the magical perfect finished art piece. The process is lost. This leaves me to assume that everything comes easy for them, for everyone. Each person who's life I'm looking at through social media is only made up of the experiences they show.... and that's the lie. THAT is my issue with social media.
We only see the successes, never really the process or the failures.
Everyone wants to show off what they are proud of, and brush under the rug, or ignore, the things that they didn't do that well. The constant bombardment of only the success leaves me to feel like I am the only one struggling. I'm the only one who doesn't get their dream job right away, or who spends hours doing a sketch only to delete it in frustration. I look at my friends and their jobs and their lives. I see how much they travel, the fact they buy a new home or a new car, and I feel like the accomplishments I may have aren't nearly as cool or substantial. I feel like my life is a failure by comparison.
Social media is dangerous for that reason. It can end up being a deep pit where all you do is compare your art and your lives to others. It can quickly get unhealthy.
Instead one must remember that it only shows the good. These people you are comparing yourself to also got plenty of rejection letters, have to redraw things many times, and make mistakes in general.
Glen Keane frequently says that he has to do many many bad drawings and "get them out" before he can start creating anything good.
I always go back to that statement because its the truth. Its a reminder that nothing is easy for anyone. That there is so much more that goes into anyone's success. It's time, practice, perseverance, and effort. Behind the curtain of social media, everyone has failed at times.