TRUTH & LIES.
These words are ringing in my head today.
When I was younger, my story went like this:
My sister was very good at art. Taking nude charcoal drawing classes when she was barely a teenager, creating pottery, and painting. I watched her excel at this, and silently, I decided I was not good at art. I let myself be “good” at other things – writing, for example, which I had never known to be an art form. These things don’t always occur to young people. I took a photography class, and I was the worst at it. I tried hard, and it didn’t help.
And so the narrative grew and grew until, without ever realizing it, I had decided I would never paint or sculpt or draw. I decided I could not. I was beyond help or skill or talent. Learning was not for me.
I regained my confidence as an artist when I pursued film-making. And then again when I became a photographer. But, in some way, those mediums were distinctly different from the raw talent of handmade art.
Up until two weeks ago, I would have continued to tell you that I can’t draw, that I can’t sculpt, that I can’t paint.
In fact, not a month ago I sat with my sister playing with Play Doh. Fast as lightning she made a fish, and then a dinosaur, and so on, until she demonstrated how quickly and easily her brain works in 3D, how she can collect the likeness of reality into clay.
I sat staring at my whale flattened to the table, entirely 2D, and not realistic in the slightest, and that feeling came back to me from childhood. And I joked that I was bad at this, and we all laughed as we do, and I moved on.
But a few weeks ago I saw a class pop up in my email from my local art center.
Ceramics for Beginners.
I clicked it, left it up in my browser for days, debating.
And then I enrolled. Without hesitation or further thought.
And I went to my first class. It was terrifying.
Take control back of your narrative.
Cultivate a positive story for your life.
In the comments (either here or on YouTube), let me know…