It has truly begun to hit me lately that time passes swiftly and all those things we put off for later might never happen. One day you are a teenager just dying to be an adult so your parents can’t tell you what to do anymore and then you are an adult. With adulthood comes responsibilities, children, bills, and usually a busy life filled with things that need to be accomplished. Then you collapse into bed exhausted and do it all again the next day.
I am the worlds leader in procrastinating. I have turned it into a fine art. The thing is, I just turned fifty. It isn’t the number of the age that bothers me. It is the reality that I have put off my dreams for so long. I just always assumed that “one day” it would all just fall into place. That just isn’t how life works.
I had this horrible habit with my photography. I would say, “I am not good at indoor photography.” Therefore I would only take pictures when I could get outside. Rather than practice and work at my shortcomings. That has recently changed and as a result of hours of practice I am actually getting good at indoor photography and have found some creative fun ways to take photo’s on rainy days indoors.
If there is anything I have learned in the last five years it is that you can’t worry about what other people think of your artistic perspective. I used to not share what I photographed for fear of judgement. What if Frida Kahlo, Georgia O’Keeffe, or Ron Bigelow decided not to share their work with the world? Art and photography cover the spectrum of the creative nature of the human psyche.
Of course not everyone is going to like your work. This does not mean that your work has no value. People gravitate towards what they love. I am a huge Dean Koontz fan. When I want to curl up with something to read I gravitate towards his work knowing that I won’t be disappointed and will get lost in the world that he has created on the pages. When I am in Frenchtown at the little art boutiques I gravitate towards the bright colors and paintings that pop out. It is in Frenchtown where I discovered the work of Ford Smith. I love his bright colors and the surreal landscapes he creates.
When I was in college I drew and painted more fantastical paintings or the desert landscape that I so loved when I lived out west. I no longer have any of my art work from those days. They were gifted to college professors and friends. There weren’t cell phones or digital cameras back then so I don’t even have pictures of my paintings. I lost track of my point. Ah yes! Doing what we love and not giving up.
I am learning what I love and my own unique style and now I know the time has come to jump in and do something with it.
Just to put things into perspective about age. Here are some names you might recognize and the ages when they changed the direction of their own lives. Vera Wang did not become a clothing designer until the age of 40. Samuel L. Jackson was a bit actor and mostly unknown until the age of 43. Julia Child was 50 when she wrote her first cookbook and became a celebrity chef (before there even was such a thing). Laura Ingalls Wilder did not become an author until age 65. Anna Mary Robertson Moses did not begin her painting career until she was 78!!
I could go on, but I think you most likely get the point. I don’t know any of these people personally so I can’t with any authority say why they waited to do what they did when they did it. I would guess they had careers, children, and most likely people who thought their dreams were unrealistic. There is also the possibility that they did not have the belief in their selves necessary to get to where they wanted. I think that little inner voice has a bit to much power on occasion.
At the time that I am writing this I am still a bit uncertain as to how to proceed and where I am going to go with this, but I have decided to get a second job so that I can afford the equipment I need and the cost of printing prints. My middle daughter has tried for years to get me to show my stuff and I have procrastinated (made excuses) for years. I think this is the year that I am going to stop saying later and say now. Now is the time to dream big.
Regardless of what it is that you are passionate about, don’t wait for later. Later is just our way of saying that we aren’t really sure. Get out there and live. You only get one chance at this life.
Change your thoughts and you change your world. -Norman Vincent Peale
I would love to hear about what it is you love, fear, or have put off until later. Let’s start later today and change our world for the better.