By 2007, my vision of becoming a professional fine artist had started to gain momentum. What once seemed like a dream job, had by this point become my main career focus. When I say dream job, let me just be clear… This was so dreamy that I can't really say I ever made a serious attempt to achieve it. At least not consciously.
Sure, it was always my end-game. It went something like this for me in my mind….”I'm going to do freelance illustration and in my spare time I'll paint and maybe someday someone will discover me“….”I'm going to start a skateboard company, so someday I'll be recognized for my graphics and have enough time and money to paint“….“I'm going to start another company doing _________ and someday I'll have time and money to paint”
You get the point …and no, this isn't an exaggeration.
Just Let Go
I mean, c'mon….creating art for the sake of art, with no deadlines and no objective purpose seemed too zen-like to even consider. Yet as soon as I stopped chasing it and surrendered to my intentions, it happened.
Sure I can trace back the timeline and link this occurrence or connection to this or that and this artistic revelation to that one, but what it comes down to was knowing what I wanted and doing it. One of my favorite spiritual teachers, Alan Watts said that true faith is about letting go, not holding on. Simple advice, but often the opposite of what most people do.
Beyond The Easel
Even more impressive (for lack of a better word) than my attempts at other businesses, was several failed idealistic attempts with my love life. After some very hurtful and failed attempts at adult relationships, I all but gave up trying to find anyone special. Yet the day I gave up on a girl that just wouldn't love me back… I'm not talking figuratively, I mean literally the day I told the other chick it was over, I met my now wife Chelsea. Valentines Day 2006.
I went into my studio several months after and inspiration hit. The painting came to me with an instant intense clarity. I sketched this piece (seen above) and instantly knew the title, which described how I was feeling with so many areas of my life….”Leaning Towards Love”. With a heart as the central focus, in the negative space between the surfer and the wave. The space between holding on and letting go. Or as the Dave Matthews song goes, “the space between.. to keep safe from the pain”
Love Is the Answer
Allowing love to be my guide, I set my intention and allowed the energy of the universe to work it's magic. I've learned and continue to learn that so much our of life experience is based on just allowing the moment to be, don't fight it. Whether it's surfing, art, relationships or stress…Acknowledge it, be aware of it and don't try and over think it.
And thus was born my painting you see below… “Leaning Towards Love“.