American Idol and the plight of the artist.

I was watching the finale of American Idol today, and for the record they are both so talented.  I am rooting for them both, and this is the first year that I would have had a lot of trouble deciding who to vote for.  I do however, think that Archuleta will win, because he’s got an amazing voice and has had the love of the people since day one.  We shall see tomorrow.
This evening, Archuleta looked so nervous and in shock after each of his performances, while Cook looked shocked but peaceful as well.  It struck me that these emotions are the general plight of the artist.  Every artist struggles with the value of their work and the existence of their talent.  Every day we are constantly evaluating what we’ve made, metaphorically, how we’ve performed on our own stage.  And for the American Idols, I could see it in their faces – the waiting for the judges’ comments, the validation of their work.  If it’s positive, there’s a sense of elation, sometimes shock.  The down side is that it only lasts a while, mere moments.  If it’s negative, there’s always the disheartening and heavy feeling of self-deprecation.  But true artists will fight through that and keep going, finding peace in the processes of the work that they do, taking refuge in their mediums.
I myself have felt all these things, but I keep learning to press on.  Sometimes its nice to feel the sense of commonality with other artists, and watching the emotions of the two Davids made me feel better knowing that its not just me fighting, but artists everywhere.  Even on TV.