No Picasso

Hi there.  Good to see you again.

A few weeks ago I mentioned that I was going to take the leap and start painting. 

Me… PAINT?!!!  Yep, hard to believe, me painting. 

Painting, like writing, was a big step.  But when you make such a public announcement like this you better be prepared to follow thru.  This is especially true when the entire family bought me painting supplies as gifts for Christmas, and a friend gave me a very cool easel.

Now before I jump into the perils of painting, let me ask you a couple of questions.

  • Are you willing to start or do things out of your comfort zone?
  • If you do start things, are you pretty good at following thru or do these things die a slow death?  Seriously, do you have a history of unfinished projects or hobbies that lie around becoming tombstones that mark failure?
  • When is the last time you took a big leap to try something new?
  • What one thing has been wiggling around inside that has caught your attention that you may like to try? 

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 Now these questions aren’t meant to judge, make you feel bad, or present an opportunity to pat yourself on the back.  They are meant to stir and challenge.

Personally, I have absolutely no room to judge.  Up until a couple of years ago my track record was pretty abysmal. 

First, I wasn’t very willing to try anything out of my comfort zone because I didn’t want to look bad.  And to add insult to injury the odds of finishing things were pretty low.  Embarrassing, but true. 

The weird thing about having a history of not completing things or doing things well has the insidious effect of making you reticent to try anything new because the outcome was already determined.  

The last few years have been different.  I can’t fully explain it but the first couple of blog entries (January, 2010 on the right side of the page) talks about my exodus from the safe confines of my small world to a more risky and fulfilling life.

This is why I made a big deal of the one year anniversary of my blog.  This blog thing was an extremely big and risky step for me.  I felt exposed and completely vulnerable.  But I started, I have faithfully continued, and I have done the best I can. 

I am not saying that I believe what I write is that good or meaningful.  But I feel good about doing it and sticking with it.  If it happens to help or encourage someone else, all the better. 

Side Note:  Once again I feel the need to say, if no one reads this blog, it is something I am to do… for me and my journey.  Although writing it has been grueling at time, it has been worth it.

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OK, now for my next big step, painting.  I kind of feel the same way about painting as I do about writing, inadequate and vulnerable.  But it is something that stirred, I listened and I’m doing. 

Like writing I did not casually start.  I have taken my time, got things in place and then at the time I felt was right… with palette, paint and brushes in hand I took the leap. 

Let me say that it has not been a pretty sight.  I feel totally weird.  But I must say it has been fun.  It’s fun since I am trying not to put to high of expectations on myself. 

Side Note:  A supportive wife really helps.  I make a few dabs of paint on the canvas that are honestly pretty bad and my wife will find something nice to say.  

She will look at it and say something like, “That’s a nice color.”  She makes it safe to look stupid.

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Since taking the leap of painting I have learned something pretty significant.  I have learned that the picture I have in my head doesn’t necessarily come out on the canvas.

I thought all I would need to do is just open a tube of paint, dip my brush and Wa La… masterpiece. 

Oh, did I mention that what I lacked in talent I made up for in naivety.

Honestly I have gotten a bit discouraged.  I am finding that it is not nearly as easy as I thought.  Although it is discouraging I am not deterred, and that’s a very nice feeling.

The learning curve and discouragement are part of the process.  This is normal. 

So what about you?  What are you thinking about doing that you know you should try to do?  Or, what are you thinking about giving up on that you know you should press forward?

I will continue to paint, take some lessons, and have fun.

Just so you know, the picture at the top is NOT one of my paintings.  One of these days I will show one.

Thanks for hanging out with me.

See you Monday.

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