Repeated exposure

The first time you hear something, you’re not really listening, you’re reacting. The second time you hear something, you’re comparing it to the first time. It’s only the seventh time you hear something that you’re actually listening.

~ Anonymous

This year I grew a sourdough starter and have been making sourdough. The results have gotten better – with plenty of room for improvement. Originally, I took 4 similar recipes and combined them to make one that I could tweak. A neighbor shared a completely different recipe – while looking at it I thought it more complicated and filed it away for future reference.

Recently, I stumbled across a recipe that I really liked the sound of. I tried it out and my baking results took a leap forward. For some reason, I thought about that recipe from the neighbor and compared the two. They’re basically the same thing! What seemed too complicated has become comfortable and fitting. I suspect a lot of that change is due to a familiarity and comfort with the basic process that comes with hands-on practice.

  • This week’s artist is – Dawn Emerson– who works with PanPastels. A friend was gushing about the pastels and sahred Dawn’s work (“raved about” is probably more accurate.) With an introduction like that, I just had to share her work with you. To see even more, check out her website and instagram!

Repeated exposure yields change in a lot of different areas. The “Rule of 7” in marketing refers to the idea that a consumer needs to see or hear your marketing message at least seven times before they take action. I’ve heard a similar suggestion about trying new foods – one should commit to a bare minimum of 3 tries before claiming to like/dislike something – those multiple tries allow our taste buds to adjust, and also give a margin of error for potential poor quality examples.

Personally, I try to keep a similar recommendation in mind for most new ventures. I should give camping gear multiple attempts in case I set it up wrong, needed time to adjust my muscle memory, or account for some other variable. I try to test out new art supplies more than once before deciding what I think – maybe it’s not that I don’t like them, but I’m just accustomed to how my regular materials fit in my hand. First opinions are hard to overcome, but can be very worth putting in the effort to do so.

No matter where you are on your journey, be willing to listen to suggestions, try new things, and generally be open to experimenting. Whatever the process looks like – the world needs your art!

Matthew & the Art Supply House crew