Thursday, April 19, 2012

Convergence in Chaos

Convergence by Jackson Pollock, 1952

 Wow, has it really over a year since my last post? I think that this qualifies as a fresh start and not a continuation of the previous blog. This is going to be a long post so be ready. Let's see...what has happened in the past year? Not much really...My darling wife received a great opportunity to work in Dubai so I quit my job, packed up the family, and moved to the Middle East. Other than that, life has been pretty slow. This generally happens every five years or so. My wife finds a great opportunity to advance her career and I come along for the ride. Whatever I am doing career-wise, I choose to stop and follow my wife on her path to success. I'm man enough to admit that I'm lazy and generally apathetic about career advancement, so I have no shame in following my high flier of a wife. 

I've become a seasoned pro at starting over and finding my own way in a new environment. However, what's different about this move is that for the first time, there is no pressure for me to find a job. My amazing wife has moved up to the big leagues and given me the opportunity to do whatever the hell I want. I have to say, it's been 4 months and it's incredibly overwhelming to have time and freedom at my disposal. Actually overwhelming isn't nearly an adequate enough descriptor...IT'S TERRIFYING! My God! I am 37 years old, I have a 3 (soon to be 4) year old daughter, and I am seriously considering starting my professional life over as if I am 18 again?? I must be insane! I no longer have the luxury of not giving a shit about what people think about me. Everyday, I ask myself, what will my daughter think about me when she grows up? Will I be an inspirational example of how never to give up? Or will I be another tragic example of wasted talent and poor decision making? In the months building up to this move I racked my brain trying to figure out what to do with myself. What avenue could I possibly explore?? Would I go back to school? Perhaps, try to make a go of it in art?

The only thing I knew for certain was that at least for a short period of time I was going to be Mr. Mom with my daughter until we found a suitable day care/school for her. The time I have spent with her has been interesting to say the least. It has been rewarding, and at times insanely frustrating and exhausting. Who would have thought a person so little could drive a grown man to such emotional highs and lows? I have no idea how stay at home moms and single mothers do it! Thank God we got in her in a school part-time a few weeks after we arrived...I actually started to want to go back to work!  On the days that my daughter was in school, I decided that I would not waste a single moment watching TV or playing games, etc. Instead I would spend them drawing. So for the last two months, I have been spending nearly 6 to 8 hours a day drawing...I think I have actually developed a mild case of carpel tunnel in the process, but the pain has been worth it. I have felt more personally fulfilled in those hours spent than I have in all of the years I spent in the working world. This is going to sound incredibly insane, but the joy I have felt has sort of brought me into a depressing period in my life. Let me explain...

As I sat here at my desk, thinking about what to write, I started to think about my life and my choices that have made into the person I am at this very moment. I suddenly realized that my life is like a Jackson Pollock painting (see above). You look at one of his paintings, and you ask yourself, "WHAT THE HELL IS THAT??" "THIS IS ART??" "A MONKEY WITH A BRUSH COULD HAVE MADE THIS!"

It's completely chaotic and a goddamn mess; however, what you don't realize is that Pollock's paintings generally started with him either drawing a figure or a word on the canvas then he let his emotion take over. They say that if you stare at some of his paintings long enough you will eventually see the original figure or word. What you see initially in that painting is a culmination of layers and layers of decisions and emotions that have buried its essential self. Isn't that what many of our lives are like? I truly believe that we are all born with something unique, call it talent or purpose. The decisions we make on a daily basis determine if our seed grows or dies. This realization sort of depressed me. I looked at my life and it was completely unrecognizable. My talent has been buried by years and years of foolish decisions. I could have felt this joy in creating art for the past 18 years, what the hell was I thinking. I am now at the point where after staring at the painting long enough, I finally see my original purpose. However, the challenge now is to make sense of the chaos.

So where will I be going with this blog in the future? Well I figure, starting Monday, I will start sharing some of my work and talking about what I hope to do with it. This is a big weekend for me since I'll be showing some of my work to professional artists to see where I stand.

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