|This was one of the pictures I did when I quit smoking, back in 1989. I picked up my markers instead of a cigarette.|
I just recently completed my website. There's a line in my bio that kind of sums up the word hurry as it applies to my life: "Deadlines move me forward and give me energy. Being an artist isn’t a job, it’s an extension of who I am." I have this particular memory that comes back to me now and then. I'm in my old bedroom, in the apartment where I grew up. I'm sitting on the floor and there's various papers and art supplies all around me. Vividly I remember thinking that I would like to be an artist when I grow up, and almost in that same thought, I'm thinking about the need to meet deadlines, the rush, the pressure, everything that that goes with that. I then become unsure of myself, and think, no I can't do that as a career.
As I grew up and went about pursuing different career choices, I never really felt settled. Yet my art was always a constant in my life, whether I was actively making it or it was only a thought. When I was 22 years old, I attempted college for the first time. I started by taking a class in drawing, unfortunately I was also at the height of another career, drinking! I had started drinking in my mid-teens. The two just didn't mix and I gave up on that class pretty much as soon as I had started. Looking back at it now, I know that this was my first attempt at normalcy; using my art as a way to find a path to sobriety. A year later I did quit, thanks to many people who loved me and a great support system. Today I am 29 years without a drink or drug. As the saying goes "But for the grace of God go I".
When I say in my bio that art is an "extension" of who I am, it's not just a line. When I was 29 years old, again in an attempt to give up a bad habit, smoking, I started back into my art. It was hard as hell to quit smoking, worst then quiting drinking and drugs! At that time in my life I was working at a hospital. Wilma Brass was one of the nurses I worked with. She was a kind woman. She knew I liked to "doodle" so she gave me gift; a set of markers and a pad of paper. A funny thing started to happen, every time I had the urge to pick up a cigarette, instead I would pick up my art supplies and go to it. That was the beginning of my quiting. I also chewed a lot of gum! I chewed so much gum it felt like my face would fall off!
I did with the markers that Wilma gave me
So deadlines...sometimes it's a hurry, a mad rush, sometimes it's an easier pace. What I've learned throughout my life is that deadlines really do motivate, and move me forward. That being an artist is something I enjoy, and having the deadline is just as much part of the thrill as creating a piece of art that you love. That it all goes hand and hand.
To all my blogging friends out there--Have a great day, and may the muse be with you!!!