“The thing about thoughtful critique is that it makes you want to engage it and continue the conversation”
— How Millennials Grew Up and Burned Out
One of the hardest things for me when asked “what do you think of my painting” is not to hesitate too long before replying because this delay is invariably taken as a sign that I think it’s terrible rather than I’m thinking. Saying “let me gather my thoughts” to gain a few more seconds doesn’t reassure either.
We all want people to like our paintings, to be intrigued by them at least. Be patient and let someone have time to look.
While you’re waiting, think of a different question to ask. Be a bit more specific than “do you like it?” or “what do you think?”. Perhaps about something new you tried, the colour choices, how it fits with your other paintings. Start the conversation.