My learning and creating make me vulnerable. When I customize a menu for a client and their event, I spend time with them, listening to them, ingesting their visions and passions for their event. I am focused and join with them, almost on a soulful level, I feel their energy to create what’s in their heads.
This makes me vulnerable. I step back and allow my inner artist to absorb all of what I’ve heard and guide me in the development of the menu that will communicate this dream. I know this is unique, I know many people would think I’m candidate to be committed. But for me it’s who I am, that which exists within and comes out for expression whether I choose to listen to it or not. I try to stay detached, but it takes work and is really difficult at times.
I then sit down for the critique. Most chefs create, never knowing the individual for whom their creating, then send out their plates and let it all go. There might be a critic or two along the way but not like this. Sitting down and asking your guest to choose their favorites items and speak out about those not so favorites, it’s a process that keeps me humble.
My ego doesn’t have time to get inflated because before I know it, here comes another “opinion stickpin” and POP! No more ego. Sounds terrible to most I’m sure. The gift of all of this is for me to have an opportunity each day to open my ears and listen, learn from people and be willing to change.
This allows me to constantly grow and develop my talents getting a bit better with each encounter.
Are you an artist or creator? How do you handle a critique?