Chem TA Toni (sannalim) wrote,
Chem TA Toni
sannalim

parable of the art moderator, or an attempt to resolve a long-held grudge

Some years ago, probably about five, but maybe six, several of my friends here on LJ were involved with and excited about a particular H/G-oriented HP fansite. They encouraged me to submit some of my HP fanart to this site. I participated in one or two of the monthly art challenges at the site, then submitted a couple of my existing pieces. The fanart section of this site was moderated by a single individual, herself a relatively well-known H/G artist. The first time I submitted art, it was accepted.
Encouraged, I chose a few more pieces that I thought fit well with the site's thematic focus. The art moderator rejected them, saying that they weren't good enough. I was a little miffed.
Some weeks later, I tried again. I went through my fanart portfolio and very carefully picked out the pieces that I was most proud of. The art moderator again rejected my submission, saying "only send in your best work." I was more than a little miffed this time, I was outright offended. I had sent in what I considered to be my best work.
I browsed around the art gallery at the site, and I saw several pieces that I thought were not as good as the work I had submitted. In linework and color management, I thought my work was just as good as anything else on the site. The major difference was that almost all of the other pieces in the gallery had been colored digitally, and my work had all been done with traditional media.
At the time, I didn't say anything about my disappointment -- nay, disillusionment -- to my LJ friends who enjoyed this fansite. I didn't want to mar their perception of it, and I certainly didn't hold it against them that the art moderator of the site didn't think as highly of my artwork as they did. That incident, however, was the beginning of the end of my active involvement in the HP fandom.

Even now, all these many years later, the bitterness I felt at being rejected in that way remains and returns whenever the incident comes to mind. I am hoping that by telling the story to LJ, even though it happened so long ago, perhaps I will be able to achieve catharsis and no longer be bothered by it.

I think that things like this happen frequently, perhaps too frequently, in the church -- not just my church, but any congregation of any faith.
Someone is doing the best that they are able, given their circumstances, and someone else tells them that what they are doing isn't good enough and that they should be "doing their best"... according to that other person's judgement of what an individual's "best effort" should be. Then the first person gets offended and feels rejected, because they are already doing their best, and drifts away from the fold.
The tricky part is avoiding becoming the art moderator myself.
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