Throwing Away History

Or well, maybe you don't feel that highly of yourself to mind throwing some of your old stuff in the garbage.

. . .

Just like how a writer may have stacks of books in their shelves already read and untouched, an artist typically has stacks of sketchbooks, canvases, and art supplies collecting dust. Well, it really depends what kind of artist they are.

There were a bunch of people in my high school who painted regularly and brought their paintings to school to work on. They weren't even assignments, but rather for a gallery they signed up for. But as I've said before, I wasn't much of a painter considering I didn't have the workspace nor the motivation to paint a full, finished piece. Hence, all my work thus far has been sketches and messy digital works for groups and the occasional commission.

Considering the fact that most of my work is on a sketchbook or just in a computer, you can imagine the amount of sketchbooks I have — some finished, some wasted, some neglected.

I feel bad for the ones I've neglected and wasted. Their first pages ruined by my indecisiveness and failed attempts of a good, clean opening. But what do you expect from a sketchbook of all things?

For those I've finished, they are rather rare. It's really hard for me to finish a sketchbook. I can never like a single kind of paper or a single feel of the book for too long. I wish I could. Thus, I do not buy many thick sketchbooks and the thin ones always seemed ideal. What can I say? Commitment issues.

But this is not just a meaningless hoarding problem — I mean I keep all of this junk for a reason, no matter how cringey they look. Although most of my teachers encouraged me to keep all my old sketchbooks, it was mostly because they warned me that people in the future might question or be suspicious as to whether I actually really make the art I produce.

But for me, it's all because of the memories that come with each book. Even if my skill was low, there is a significant line of agreement. Each and every page contains some kind of character I made. Ones that have their own individual personality and past, ones that have their own design and can be further developed in the future as they grew. And each year my tastes and what I consider pretty would change and it would reflect in both my characters and my drawing.

In third grade I liked Evanescence and the color black vs. in seventh grade, I started liking clowns and the color white.

It shows in my books, I drew my main characters in chokers, fishnets, black boots, and excessive eye liner; in seventh grade I drew my main characters in full white attire with heavy face paint and tattoos.

That sort of change in style or taste is, in its own weird and peculiar way, satisfying to see. It shows some kind of growth — a change in my behavior. It also makes me wary that one day I'll find boring and dull outfits to be appealing. In third grade, I abhorred pink and any thing that pink touched but now I like the mixture of a nice, light pastel pink with lots of white.

I like keeping that evidence of change — whether it be an improvement in anatomy overall or a change in taste — alive and still available for me to see. Not only it reassures me that I've improved, but it also lets me know that I'm always going to be changing, and it intrigues me to know that one day I might like the shoes I despise today.

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