How do you keep your judgement?


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How do you keep your judgement?

Postby kitzeldikatz » Mon Aug 15, 2016 11:50 am


when I make something I often find myself at a point where I can't tell whether it's good or bad. By leaving it alone for some month I often come to the conclusion that it is the latter. But how do you keep the judgement while being in the process of making it?

I come from a technical background where "good" or "bad" can be decided by measurement. But with art?
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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby DK » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:03 pm

LOL...That is a great question.
Stare at the Mona Lisa for a month and it will start look pretty mundane too.

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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby jahnocli » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:20 pm

This is something that philosophers have argued about - sorry, debated - for thousands of years. As Picasso once said, it's not so much getting the right answers, it's asking the right questions. Comparing art to quantitive measurement is the wrong kind of question...
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby Greenlaw » Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:10 pm

That's a great question. I think it happens to everybody.

I sometimes get in that space when I've worked on something for a very long time without a break. At that point, I usually have to ask somebody whose opinion I trust. Even if we wind up disagreeing, the discussion may get me to look at the work with a fresh eye and consider changes to it.

What I find helpful is to keep multiple projects going and rotate working on them them. This way, when I return to one, I can sometimes look at the work more objectively and make improvements if necessary. (It almost always is.)

Sometimes, I'll work too hard on a project or a job and, by delivery day, I'll get really disgusted and think it's all garbage. Then, a year or two later, I might come across it again and think, "hey, who did that? It's not bad." :)
Last edited by Greenlaw on Mon Aug 15, 2016 9:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby hayasidist » Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:09 pm

Agreeing with Greenlaw and the value of a trusted second opinion -- my "QA/QC department" is my wife - even for my business work (supported by "art", not itself art). If she says something needs to change she's usually right. So I (usually try to) involve her throughout a project lifecycle... just having her listen patiently and sometimes inertly to my ramblings can make me realise I've missed/messed something. She looks at stuff from a different base of experience and expertise; she's good at constructively challenging me or simply saying "that doesn't make sense to me..."

The real b*mmmer is when I've just finished something and she looks at it and goes "it'd be better if .... " and suddenly "finished" becomes "needs rework"... if there's time!
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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby JaMike » Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:13 pm

I normally have clients or a boss who will specify what they want - makes it easier. :)

But for my own projects, I think back to my college tutors and how they would critique my work (and how my classmates would too, and I would with theirs), and try to apply the same criteria. So I'm probably harsher with myself than I have to be.

The best indicator if my work is good is if I leave it a day, come back to it and forget I was the one who did it (like Greenlaw said). Then I know it's ready. 8)
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Re: How do you keep your judgement?

Postby hayasidist » Wed Aug 17, 2016 11:12 am

JaMike wrote:I normally have clients or a boss who will specify what they want - makes it easier. :)

so do I ... but customer requirements are usually specified in a way that leave considerable creative freedom -- and whilst I completely agree that customers can have a lot of input to the process, for me the real commercial / contractual challenge is to ensure that they can't play the "I don't like that" card too often - some (bad) customers will say "I want X" - and despite the fact that any reasonable person would see that what is delivered does fulfil that - they'll (try to) argue points of detail to force rework and rework and manipulate an outcome that is more Y (which is what they actually wanted if only they'd thought about it or listened to advice before jumping into contract) than the X which was delivered ...

Getting a robust definition of "acceptance process and criteria" into a contract is, IMO, vital. And delivering a really solid and impressive initial response to the requirement, IMO, helps establish the environment for easy ultimate acceptance - and that's where the outside opinions on creative work really helps - not only to polish the product, but also to deliver **and demonstrate** confidence that what is offered does meet requirements ("my processes are ISO 9000 compliant - here is the external QC report on this draft").
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