To be always intending to live a new life, but never to find time to set about it; this is as if a man should put off eating and drinking and sleeping from one day and night to another, till he is starved and destroyed.
I came across this quote earlier this year. I wrote it out on a small piece of paper and taped it on the wall next to my desk.
I read it multiple times a week to remind myself to stay focused. To keep getting something done and moving forward even if I’m not sure where I’m headed yet.
I have wanted to get back to art and photography for more than a few years. Art and photography have been part of my life since I was a kid but, like many people, I let it get further and further behind me.
There would be an occasional outburst of creativity – maybe I would create a collage or make some entries in my sketchbook. A flicker of I should try to do this more often but then I would fold that part of me away again until some future time.
I even went to college for photography and yet, that is not my career and it has been years since I have picked up a large “fancy” camera. My camera phone, though, does get a workout so I suppose that counts.
I could blame it on being busy and working for myself and running a household – there are always things that need doing, right?
But at the end of the day, it’s just good old-fashioned fear.
Nothing more than hearing the inner critic and imagined judgement by imagined (& not imagined) people. And me believing that I am not good enough, am not talented enough, not ready.
And truthfully, if I do start putting art out into the world, the judgement will come. Someone will always be unhappy. Someone will always think that I am wasting my time. Someone will criticize me.
But what if…?
For my birthday this year, I asked my partner for a custom frame on some childhood art I had created in first grade.
It now hangs in my office/studio.
This little drawing was in a museum exhibition – why I’m not sure now. Was it the whole class? Was it the whole school? All I know is it still has the little descriptive tag on it from the exhibition.
I hung it in my office to remind me that art has been a part of my life since the beginning. It is an essential part of who I am and, I guess, what I’m here to contribute to the world.
I have always struggled a bit with that idea – being meant to contribute something to the world or that it’s my duty to do so.
But art – the thought of it, the desire to do it – never goes away.
I always come back to it and I’ve reached a point where I’d like to know the answer to that question.
What if I made the art and put it out there?