The Rocketeer - Harsh Critic

I am truly my own harsh critic. I can doubt myself. I never think anything is good enough – of my own work. It’s taken me a long time to be OK with my artwork and know when enough is enough. When I see students falling into that same abyss I really try to bring them up and give them a different mindset that will help them in the future.

Harsh Critic

"Well, I do expect a lot of myself. I'm a harsh critic because I know what I'm capable of... Sometimes it just flows, but more often than not, it's pure physical and spiritual torment just to get something decent on paper. I often get very discouraged with the whole creative process." - Dave Stevens                                                              

It is the year 1938. Racing Pilot and Barnstormer, Cliff Secord, is trying to be the best at his craft. He finds a package hidden by two thieves. In the package is a rocket prototype. This rocket prototype allows the wearer to fly. Using all his skills, Cliff Secord, the Rocketeer, battles thieves and the Nazis. His adventures will take him to New York where he will meet, the villainous Lothar.

Be honest, How many of us are “harsh critics” especially to ourselves? I know I am. We want everything to be perfect. We try to make everything perfect. There is nothing wrong with that except when it becomes difficult. There is a character defect called – perfectionism. It can cause fear to complete tasks and it can cause us to be judgmental (also a character defect) toward others. The late Dave Stevens, the creator of the Rocketeer, suggests that at times when he is able to let go of the critic something happens – the work just flows. Our perfectionism will cause physical, spiritual and emotional anguish which will make the creative process difficult. Maybe it is our job to let go of perfectionism. That is easier said than done in some cases. However, when we treat ourselves as precious objects we become stronger. Take a step back and go get a cup of coffee, we can treat ourselves special for a moment. Then come back and look at the project with gentler eyes.

The Rocketeer
First Appearance: Starslayer, #1 and #2 (February 1982), Pacific Comics

Creators: Dave Stevens