Well, that's the typical scenario for learning artists; you never really can get something down, even if you at first believe you did. I, too, fall under that category.
Everyone may dig my work and all, but essentially, I'm an amateur. I'm still learning, still grasping new concepts, ideas, and fundamentals. I do take what I learn seriously, always applying and taking it to action. However, one may become so used to doing things a lot, that things can end up becoming dull, bland, and blunt. Think of it like a sword; you can be a skilled swordsman, but if you don't take it to the blacksmith every now and then, your strikes won't do NEARLY as much damage as a nice sharp one. That's how I feel.
Earlier today, I ran across something that made me realize I need to hit the "blacksmith" up. It was an older work I was hired to do, and I, in turn, subconsciously didn't make the connection of what I needed to correct that the client expressed concern about. Long story shortened, I now realize what his concern was. Why did I pass it off? Beats me, but maybe because I was swinging that "blunt sword". I was caught up in the thought of owning a "sword" rather than keeping it "sharp".
I'm speaking figuratively because it's the best way I can show how I feel about this. It also brings humility into play.
I can say, "I see myself as a humble guy", but what is humility if you're 'labeling' yourself as humble? That's kinda contradictory to me. In my head, that's what I believe. Because after every piece of work I do, and I mean EVERY, I always catch a flaw. ALWAYS. Which makes sense because no piece is perfect; though in my head, seeing that flaw always humbles me.
Well again, with this incident, I guess my mind was ignoring that flaw, and it started to feel a bit high and mighty. It just shows how easy it is to get caught up with a proud persona. I'm not talking 'bout "Man, I'm proud of myself on how I did this one"; rather, the pride that no one likes, a la "I think it looks fine" amidst a heavy rain of critique.
I don't know where I'm really going with this, but all I think I'm saying is that I let myself slip, yet again. Everything's a trial-and-error thing, but also a live-and-learn thing. Just keep moving on, I suppose.