• LuhVek Art

If At First You Don’t Succeed…

In 2019 I applied to one of my first art shows ever. The show was for the MASF or the Miniature Art Society of Florida. The MASF is not only a well organized show that’s been put on for decades, it is also very hard to get accepted. All paintings should be professionally framed, have a D ring back as well as one, one inch (male sided) velcro dot on the bottom middle of the frame. Your painting must be of original work and to qualify as a miniature piece of art, the overall piece can be no larger than 5” x 5”. All figures represented in the work must adhere to strict miniature scale: no human head larger than 1.5”… and these were just a few of the necessities listed on this year’s prospectus…

When I learned about the MASF in 2019, I viewed their previous show catalog (my god was it phenomenal) and I decided right then and there, that this show was for me and I had to be a part of it. For my entry I painted a 5” x 5” painting (of Taylor Swift ;); mailed it out; crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

I’m happy to report that not only did I hope for the best, but I received it: my artwork was rejected. Yup. I was not accepted. Was I disappointed? Oh my god, yes. I was disqualified for my picture’s “back side” but if we’re being honest, I think the juror got an easy out… he was able to disqualify me because of the back without having to address the front… Now… I have a habit of putting only my best work out there and I loved the piece I had created for the MASF in 2019, I still have it on display in my home, but the reality is that I was a new painter submitting work to a show with applicants who had been painting for decades and if we’re being honest; there was a HUGE difference in the quality level of what they entered vs what I had submit.

When the 2019 catalog came out without my painting, I studied it: I had A LOT of work to do if I was ever going to get accepted. Last year came and went and the pandemic put the show (for the first time ever) on hold. Although I was bummed to have to wait another year to try, I was thankful to get in another year of practice. When this year’s application finally arrived via email last month, I was ready.

Left: 2019 entry / Right: 2021 entry

Two years ago I was rejected. Two years ago I was told: no. Two years ago I decided that a goal was a goal, and I would try again. This year I went smaller; I went with a more complex composition; and this year I also had the obvious: a lot more practice under my belt. Now I can’t tell you that I have been accepted this time (I still have to mail this entry out); I sure am hoping for an acceptance, but what I can tell you is that even without one, I’ve already won. To me, being told ”no” isn’t an absolute. ”No” means, get better and try again and I did just that. “No” is a challenge that I will rise to meet. Rejection makes me better.

Today I will seal this year’s entry and get it ready for framing and packaging. Later this week I’ll mail it off with my entry fee and typed up application; being sure not to forget that 1” diameter of male velcro on the back and then I’ll wait… I find huge reward in being told “no” then busting my a$$ to turn that L into a W. I may never be the best, but I will always keep on pushing: and that my friends, is winning.

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