My first attempt at self portrait without pencil nor grid was dubbed a "caricature" by my hubby.  Point taken.
A constructive criticism.  As my art teacher quoted, "He's encouraging you in a discouraging way."  I'm challenged.  I will not stop until hubby starts talking to my painting thinking it is actually me.

Mastery.  Honing ones' skill in any craft is the secret of all the masters or so I'm told.  The more hours one puts in to polish his gift surpasses talent.  Talent is inherent. in each of us.  We all have different gifts.  It's there waiting to be discovered.  Our purpose is to dig and find out what it is.  Once we do, we move forward and often times we hit a brick wall.   A block.  A plateau.  I say, let it not stop us.  May we all have the strength to move beyond what  people say and what our inner critical voice says.  To silence that inner critic is the most challenging. What we believe is the very thing that matters.  So I breathe,..  Believe.