Getting worse before getting better.
Listening to the BBC program this morning "the life scientific" with the guest "Annette Karmiloff-Smith" mostly about childhood development.
One of the interesting bits was that kids around 5 would react to observed results appropriately when for example trying to stack/balance things, slightly older children 7 or so would struggle with the same task when an item with an inherently off center center of gravity item like a butter knife was the subject.
Turns out that as the youngun's learn about geometric relationships they apply what they are learning and try to force their new knowledge of geometric concepts to balance; it doesn't work, they actually get worse at balancing things for a while.
It seems to me that our seemingly normal human expectation that we should consistently get better results in some linear and uninterrupted manner as we learn is unfounded.
I'm not a big golf fan but a real example of this concept is Tiger Woods. Over his career he has several times changed his stroke. Each time he has done this his game suffers and the world wonders what the heck he's doing.
It occurred to me that very much the same thing seems to happen in photography. Looking at my photographic history it is littered with similar WTF valleys as I learn new things that only go away as I reconcile the new info with the real world.
My point here is simply given the frustration with artistic blocks and goofy results we all get as we learn this craft, that we need to be patient with ourselves as we learn.
Keep shooting, keep printing, keep experimenting, keep learning, keep thinking.