There is so much mental reconciliation and emotional strength that goes into creating a finished piece of art. So many drafts and sketches and swatches of color that people often never see. So many moments of doubt, so many instances that challenge me to take a deep breath and try something I'm not entirely sure will work. It's far easier to give up than it is to try
Trying matters so, so much.
Trying builds heart.
I don't think this perceived struggle is unique to my work, or even to this art form. I feel it when I rock climb, when I go backpacking, when I walk into a room full of people who I don't know, about to participate in or teach a new activity.
I believe that pursuing one's curiosity (and note how I didn't use the word "passion") inherently comes with some level of facing a fear of the unknown. In a day and age where we are bombarded with images of perfection and other people's successes, normalizing the shadow side of this process feels important to honor and share with others.
There is a quote that I had on my mirror all throughout highschool that I found in one of those 365-inspiration calendars. I believe it helped me develop the attitude and ethic I needed to create a portfolio that got me into college on a full tuition scholarship. I've recently returned back to it:
"Don’t wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect.
Stop waiting for that perfect moment to start pursuing your curiosity - just start somewhere. Jump in and get your hair wet. Get some dirt under your nails and sweat on your back. You won't regret it.