Every creative has had the reverse of this conversation. Someone, usually well meaning, trying to guide us away from the arts and into something “more lucrative.”
That’s why I loved this cartoon I saw on social media. Brad Diller posted it to his Sunday Morning comic and it’s brilliant. A dad is talking to his son and encouraging him to practice his art in case he can’t make it as a lawyer. You can see the cartoon here.
Friends, giftedness is giftedness. Take it from someone who blew a year of his life and ten grand because no one thought he could make it as an artist. Yet here I am 35 years later, far from starving and having had a pretty good life working in the creative field. Was everything I’ve done fun? No! Did I hate some of it? Yes, but hard work and determination combined with finally learning to follow the guidance of God have led to a pretty good life.
Along the way, the direction changed. Back in the day I didn’t think speaking or ministry would ever be a part of my life, nor did I imagine I would be the author of any books, let alone all these, not to mention the fact that the internet didn’t exist, but through a chain of events and openness to God’s guidance, many facets of life came into focus, I learned how to do what I need to do and I think that is what I am saying.
A life in the arts is possible, but you have to be willing to do the work, do what it takes, suffer through some stuff and keep being open to following God’s leading and to new ideas. The path will probably not be traditional, and it will have twists and turns and more than a few aggravations, but you can get somewhere if you’re willing to do what it takes.