How many times did I choose a career path?
The first time: My major. Art was my preference, but disliking the attitude of the art department I abandoned it for psychology. It turned out the professors were behaviorists, and that didn’t suit me either. I settled on history, a good place to start when you are only 18! But art wasn’t forgotten. I married at 21 and while my children were young I took 10 years of studio art classes, enough to constitute a minor, if anyone was
The second time: An advanced degree: Again I looked at an art degree. Still no. Psychology won and this time it was a better fit. I became a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and practiced for 29 years. Possibly the all of this was necessary to mature as an artist.
The third time? 5 years ago when I retired. I was itching to paint more than ever before! Now I have the time–and perhaps not the worry about starvation!
I have not settled on a style nor narrowed my subjects of interest. Portraiture, Figure & Landscape still predominate in my work. Since retirement I have embraced abstraction and surrealism as well. Because of my background as a therapist, both are far more interesting to me than they might have been earlier.
I have a lifetime storehouse of sights, ideas and feelings: shapes, colors, lines, concepts, symbols, images, dreams, & fears that may emerge on a canvas— sometimes surprising me–when I play with paint and then develop whatever shows up, almost unbidden.
While it is true that we don’t get to return to an early choice and re-do it, I feel as if I have had the opportunity to do the next best thing–return to an early love, painting, and go at it with even greater enthusiasm than before!