Process vs. Outcome

Hmmm, process vs. outcome, which side am I on?

Some people claim that the difference between craftspeople and artists is that craftspeople are concerned with the making of the piece while artists are more interested in the final outcome and how people react to it. While there is a grain of truth to this, it’s not the whole story.

For me, process is a huge part of what I do. I love the magic found in turning a flat piece of metal into a sculptural object. I enjoy hammering the metal, working with it and against it to transform the sheet into something new. But I am also working toward a finished piece. I want people to enjoy the end product and to interact with it.

I definitely preferred the outcome of this to the actually making of the texture!

There are plenty of fine artists who are really into process. I remember reading about an artist who was trying to achieve a canvas where the paint was a completely even surface. Pollack’s work seems (at least to me) to be completely about seeing the physicality of how he created his paintings.

Either way I feel both areas are important. The process is intensely satisfying to me, but ultimately I’m creating pieces to be enjoyed by other people.

Which are you more drawn to – how a piece is made or how the finished piece affects you personally?

5 thoughts on “Process vs. Outcome

  1. I think I am more fascinated by the process than the finished piece, but then each time I see a piece that has truly turned out the way I envisioned it, it gives me so much joy and of course viewers reactions are the cherry on top!


  2. Artists suffer for their art…such as when you were making all those dots (which looked like it was well worth it) and when I was hammering the edges of discs for earrings till my ears were ringing…yeah, I know…shoulda worn ear protection. But there was a song on Pandora that I wanted to hear…shoulda waited!

    Nayna, I can truly understand that feeling of joy you’re describing. It transcends the pain you just went through to create the piece!

    As an aside…I’m using a serendipitious byproduct of making jewely (my calloused and roughed-up fingertips) to do something I always wanted to do…learn to play the guitar. Now I just have to find a decent one to learn on.


    1. Great idea Betsy ! I was wondering how to get my hands back to their original condition, but your idea sounds better ! I hope you find a good guitar soon 🙂


  3. It’s not the destination but the journey…and yet.
    I love the journey of creating art, the problem solving, the fight to get what you want, and often accepting something you didn’t expect, but love anyway. Yet, when all is said and done, I show my work to people. Why? Because I want to see their reactions. I want that communication from my art to their heart. If the reaction isn’t what I expected, for better or worse, it still touched them somehow. Isn’t that what it’s about?


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