i don't know why this image felt right, only that it did. stuck in my brain since i first saw it. this woman who lives in a tiny village in india isolated from most things i know as familiar, who felt and laughed in a way that i knew.
here it is. the thing i teach at my workshop. the thing that's fed my children, and made me thousands of dollars over the last few years. the thing i will continue to teach, for money or for free --- because i don't care about being the best---i care about helping. i care about others living their potential and feeling their inherent worth.
are you ready?
there are no rules. there is no right way. no one knows what they are doing and we are all just making it up as we go along. you want to have a voice? make it to "the top?" be decisive. be passionate. trust yourself. enjoy the process. the exact, and i mean EXACT thing you feel in making your images will be the primary thing people feel when viewing them. but don't listen to what they feel, do it for you. do it for something greater than you. for creation's sake--for the need, the instinctive urge in every single one of us to make something. to express. to shout into the void, hello! hello! hello! i am here! can anyone here me? i. exist. i. am.
because you do. i promise you do. i promise your existence means something. i can't prove it. only you can do that,
and the surest thing is that no one will hear you if you try to make your voice sound like everyone else's. how could they when it blends in so well? be ugly, be strange, be unpredictable and beautiful, be you!
i've seen them come and i've seen them go. 300 now. 300 people i've taught. who's work i've poured over individually, every single portfolio. who's hearts i've dug into with odd questions. each one, i asked, WHO ARE YOU? and i read their answers, every word. i don't remember all their names. but i remember the thing that made or broke them;
not in the way we all think of it. as in confidence = you think you are awesome. but rather confidence as in acceptance. as in, okay, this is me. i'm not the best, but i'm here and i'm trying. i will not hide from it any more. i will share....
so there you go. that's it. well, maybe one more thing, a favor really. will you look at that spark? that one you don't understand, but can see its glimmer inside you somewhere? that's what i did writing this blog post. i listened to that red/orange flicker that rose up in me until i couldn't go about my life any more without honoring its burning insistence. remove any expectation, and just see where the light goes. i promise that's my final secret to never being disappointed.