I’ve considered deleting Facebook. Many times. I find, particularly when I’m in a fragile emotional state, it can drum up feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy. Life’s-not a-competition-but-you’re-winning kinda thing.
I’m not deleting Facebook, however, as it helps me keep in contact with my close friends and helps me get work, so I’ve basically tried to live with it instead of against it. One of the most helpful realisations I’ve made recently is that Facebook is a stage, and us (the donkey’s on it), merely players. Now I’m certainly not judging the validity of everyone on Facebook’s “realness”. Of course, you’re all the realest (ok, maybe second realest if we’re counting Iggy), but the image we present of ourselves across Facebook is a construction. Almost like a reality tv show, where we know we’re watching real people, but we also know we’re not getting the whole story.
So, day in, day out we are confronted with a myriad of people that invite us into little, carefully crafted snippets of their lives. And soon enough, characters emerge. Depending on your world view, your personal tastes and your position in life, you notice that, as in any good stage show, there are goodies and baddies, people you root for and people you boo (maybe silently behind a Retina display monitor or loudly in a string of comments with accompanying angry gifs to convey your furious emotions. I, for the most part, prefer the fourth wall up for my dramas, so will rarely get directly involved (but it you prefer a pantomime, hey, go nuts).
As with good characters too, we’re often encouraged to read between the lines. The way you are and the way you appear (on FB) are not always in sync (and are occasionally completely at odds), and obviously you don’t share every aspect of yourself with the Facebook community (although it seems like some people are trying to, amirite?) so there are a large number of conclusions being drawn here, about you, about what you’re like, what you do, who you are. People will use whatever colours they want to paint you into a hero or a villain (a hero in your eyes might appear as a villain in mine and vice versa). (Of course this only works for people who solely exist in your life as a cyber presence – IRL friends and family have established their multifaceted and complex human natures to you through a history of real life interactions.)
The characters on my wall are endless, and I’m clapping for the girl who’s attended a slew of weddings but it still waiting on that proposal from her long time boyfriend. I’m cheering on the newly pregnant woman who doesn’t disguise her struggles and appears both genuinely thrilled and properly terrified by her impending sentence. Then there’s the less-than-heroic young, corporate dude who shares meninism posters, photos of Friday night piss-ups and memes featuring women with huge breasts, or the self righteous mother who deems everyone’s life achievements unworthy compared to the fact she’s popped a couple of blubs out of her uterus.
You may think I’m the villain, for making these judgments. You might preach about supporting all my fellow FB frenz and that I should be speaking up for social justice and I should defriend/unfollow anyone I don’t agree with or think is a dick. But srsly dudes, I don’t want a Facebook feed full of people just like me, furiously agreeing with one another. I like the try hards, the braggers, the preachers and the jerks. They’re probably a punish in real life, but on Facebook, they keep things interesting (the baddies are always the most interesting).
If you’re reading this, disgusted and horrified that I’m blithely suggesting I’m reducing you down to a pantomime cyber character, fine. Let me be the villain. Or defriend me, I don’t care. I think it’s a healthier approach to start seeing Facebook as the fabulous, constructed, masterpiece theatre it is, rather than a gripping insight into the real lives of others: where I for one, am a glamorous and successful, young artist with a thoughtful, inquisitive nature, a handsome boyfriend and an eternally happy family.
Because nothing reeks of reality more than total and utter perfection. lol. 


They tell us that perfection is unattainable. An unreasonable benchmark that haunts and hinders creatives like a hovering black cloud with impeccable eyeliner. It seems fair enough to ward people off the idea of striving for perfection. It halts a great deal of projects. Stirs up inner conflicts. Turns people into quitters.

“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.” Dali said that . But I often have a problem believing the impossibility of attaining perfection because, quite honestly, I feel confronted by perfection constantly and relentlessly. What drives me towards seeking perfection is the pure evidence that it exists. In John Lennon’s Across The Universe. In Mark Rothko’s 1962 Blue & Grey. In Pinterest photos of naked cakes. In fine lace detail on AP lingerie, antique jewellery, pink peonies and Marilyn Monroe in All About Eve.

Now, creative & aesthetic perfection is objective. I’m sure you could actively find fault in any of the examples I’ve listed above (not to my face though, or I’ll cut you). But I think that they’re perfect. And if they can be perfect, then why can’t I? Or at least why can’t I create something that is?

I think the corruption comes from the creative process itself. The sweat and anguish about selecting just the right colours. Or having the lines just the right length or nailing the texture, or perfectly balancing the composition. It’s all trial and error. And even when we’re finished and are left with something that we’re mildly happy with, it still seems far from perfect, because for the creator, that completed work is still charged with the memories of all those little failures that went into creating it. And nothing feels less perfect than failure. Where as when we look at the work we admire of others, there are no memories of failure. No recollections of struggle, or disappointment, or regret. Just something beautiful. Complete. Perfect.

Perhaps the real challenge lies in the ability to allow oneself to recall those struggles and see perfection in the final work even still. God knows its possible, or should I say, Kanye knows its possible…(same thing really. According to him). Or is the greater task to not aim to see things as perfect and imperfect, but rather just as they are, and as they affect you.

I did a painting of some pink peonies. The flowers were perfect. The painting, far from it. And I guess that’s okay.