Tuesday, November 2, 2010

30 Days of Truth: Day Twenty Three

Day Twenty Three - Something you wish you had done in your life.

I wish I had paid more attention to what my Dad was doing artistically. I wish I had watched him more. I wish I had asked questions. I wish I had learned art from him as well as inherited art from him. He was a true master. I wonder how much more or better we would have bonded (if at all), had art helped to connect us.

In my early adolescent years I picked up a pencil and sketched the shed in our backyard. I showed it to Dad. He said, "Not bad, but you need to learn shading and shadow." I know now that he was probably proud of me, probably being encouraging, probably would have even taught me if I'd said, "How?" But, he had scarred me so badly in the past that all I heard was his usual drunken, "You're no damned good." So, I put art away for the next three and a half decades. I saw it as someone else's territory and there was a big bad bullet riddled sign posted saying, "STAY OUT! NO TRESPASSING!"

I never took an art class.

It's not his fault. I'm not laying blame.

I'm just wishing.


  1. I have a few of those "dad moments". Now, decades later, I am 100% certain that how I framed his words so long ago were not how he meant them. But I heard what I heard and I wove those words and the emotions they engendered into my very fabric...and it shaped the course of my life. Odd, now, so many years later...those SAME words echo differently and serve as impetus. I suppose that is forgiveness.

  2. Barb, this is one time I can speak with some authority-- art classes do NOT determine artistic success. prowess or ability). You have to have some inherent talent (which you most definitely do), you have to give yourself time to practice & explore (which you finally are), and then just DO IT (to quote the Nike people). I sat through countless art classes down through the ages, and there were plenty of folks who thought they had talent (eh, not so much), and others who either dismissed their talent or who were unable to claim it (for a Greek chorus worth of reasons-- mostly internal racket telling them they couldn't/shouldn't).

    You're doing it & I'm so glad :-)


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