Pain can be debilitating if not well-managed, but it can also provide inspiration.
I donated this painting for use in a raffle to support the Wounded Warrior Project, and though only one person bid on it with some of the tickets he purchased, I had the chance to meet him when he came to pick up his prize.
It was a powerful moment as an artist. This man, who had never heard of me or seen any of my artwork, was as giddy as a fangirl meeting her favorite actor. I spent over an hour chatting with him; I told him about my struggle with the onset of chronic back pain and he told me about the first date he went on with his wife. (It turns out their first date was in my hometown.)
It wasn’t fame that made him so excited; it was the way the painting spoke to him.
This post might make me sound like a braggart, but I haven’t quite reached the point yet.
This post is for all the beginning artists out there who worry that they might not ever get famous: Don’t do it for money or fame. Do it because something inspired you to create a piece that will speak for you.
It might not be pain that inspires you. It could be the beauty of nature, the injustice of society–inspiration can be found anywhere, and any subject can become a thing of beauty.