As admins and moderators, we see just about everything in the group. Beautiful paintings, great educational advice. Generally, our colorful community really does pour out not just paint, but support for other artists.
Sometimes, the issue isn’t with our fellow artists not supporting us though, is it? Every once in awhile, a post pops up in the group from an artist who’s frustrated. Maybe they posted a picture in the group and it didn’t get very much engagement. Maybe they posted a picture of a piece on their own social media and no one liked or commented on it, or worse, it was negatively received.
In this Pour It Out, we’re going to talk about understanding the weight of social media feedback and how to shrug that weight off of your shoulders.
Why do we crave likes?
Social media, at its core, isn’t really just about connection. It’s about validation. We’ve become accustomed to the idea that virtual likes are a measurement of our worth. It sounds pretty terrible when you simplify it, doesn’t it? I probably don’t have to echo sentiments that you’ve already heard, but let me remind you again – your worth as a person, and as an artist, is not quantified by likes on social media.
How to Deal With Low Likes
I won’t lie; I know that my worth lies in the feedback of my friends and family, but it still bothers me when I post something and it doesn’t get a lot of likes. This use to bother me so much in fact, that I briefly considered closing my business because I was absolutely convinced that no one liked my work.
Truly, that’s not the case. When I told my friends and family that I was considering closing my business, they encouraged me to keep at it. I realized that there are likely others online that do like my work, but just don’t give it a “thumbs up”; and I can tell you, that’s much more common than you think.
Now, speaking specifically for the group, let’s talk logistics. We have around 94,000 people in our group. Ninety. Four. Thousand. That’s a lot of people. There are hundreds of new posts daily, and Facebook doesn’t show what’s posted in chronological order. That means that when you post, there’s a good chance it may be lost in the shuffle.
One way you can get the group engaged with your work is to post a picture. Text-only posts are often overlooked while a post with a picture grabs the viewer’s attention. Even if the picture is of an old piece and has nothing to do with your question, post it anyway. It might be the attention grabbing thing you need.
Another way to get your post some love is to make sure you’re abiding by the group rules. First, if you’re posting something obscene, off-topic, etc., you’re likely to be removed and banned by the mods and admin. Second, the group is not the place to sell things, so if you’re trying to sell your work, your supplies or something else, the group will likely either report you or ignore you since no one wants to be advertised to.
You can also become more recognizable by jumping in and commenting on posts. It only takes a moment to leave an encouraging comment or constructive advice on a fellow member’s post. If you don’t give the love, you can’t expect to get it back.
Measure your worth by your work.
Social media is a weird and amazing place that can be a very useful tool for you and your business. That being said, it cannot measure your worth as an artist. If you believe you’re an artist, guess what? You’re an artist. If you’re creating a piece that makes you feel a certain way, or that you hope brings a certain feeling to someone else, you’ve arrived. No one, not even the internet, can take that from you.
What to Read Next…
March’s Pour it Out: Arts vs. Crafts
Pour it Out: An Acrylic Pouring Q&A
Sara Wagner is an author and artist from Upstate New York. She is the owner of Studio Blackwater and can typically be found covered in paint, cats, or her two young daughters. You can find her on Facebook and Instagram as @studioblackwater.
5 thoughts on “Pour it Out: Taking or Leaving Likes”
Thanks very well said! I love that comment of ‘if you think your an artist, guess what? YOU ARE AN ARTIST! the nagging self doubt and critique/criticism that is self induced does nothing but stop me in my tracks and I know that is a common trait with artists. So getting over it, getting into paint, draw, create and doing it is the remedy’ practicing art making, like when the say practicing Medicine means your in it, and doing it, not thinking about doing it… action is a great cure for self doubt. and quantity leads to quality!
Après quelques années de pratiques artistiques en aquarelle, acrylique, pouring, powertex comme hobby, j’ose affirmer que Je suis une artiste ????Bien sur on ne se prend pas la grosse tête, je suis novice, curieuse, avide de créer et j’aime ce que je fais… Il n’est pas facile d’entendre les critiques sur nos créations mais c’est constructifs, tout comme des félicitations !! Osons notre art !!!
‘Facebook doesn’t show what’s posted in chronological order.’ You’re so right there!
I’m very interested in this Acrylic Pouring stuff myself. Not attempted one yet though but getting all the supplies, tips, tricks and an area in which to carry all of this out.
Because of my interest (and lack of starting), I support others on our FB page with encouraging comments and ????/????. I’ve followed a lot of artists own pages too! FB doesn’t post chronologically therefore I can miss your creative wonder piece, just know I would’ve liked/loved it anyway.
Keep on creating!
I will never post or like or dislike a piece. Mostly because I don’t really actually use Facebook. All the good groups are there.
Let me edit this to say I am in the group and on Facebook. but I won’t be an active participant one way or another. I love what I see there and the support I do see.