Is it for money? Heavens no. Money rains far easier in other places than in the world of art.
So why do we do it? This crazy dance. Why don’t we just take an easier, more prosperous path – like any sane person would do?
The answer is simple. We are not sane.
We hear voices.
“Maybe like this!” the voices sing as they gently push my head to the side. And I see something new that was always there.
They’re whispers of truth, and no matter how hard you try not to hear; no matter how long you pretend the world is just the way your teachers taught you -- it never works. You still see the world differently. And those gentle voices never stop.
I can feel them now! On my shoulder touching me.
“You know,” they breathe warmly in my ear. “It’s really more like this . . .” and they switch the shadows and light around.
“I know” I murmur back, and I tilt my head to see a little more.
I had suits and thick books that people lived their lives by. And when they’d stray from the rules I’d push them back between the lines. For this I got money, and emptiness, and more money to live with the emptiness.
“Not this . . .” they gently sang tugging at my suit and turning me in another direction.
I tried ignoring them. I’d reach for the books and read out loud. “These Rules!” I’d say grasping at pages. But I could hear them laughing. “No . . . it’s over there,” they whispered, pointing me away.
“Enough!” I screamed and I tore pages from the book. I flung them to the table and I cut and drew and twisted those pages . . . into a feeling. And the voices sang louder, clearer.
So here I am now. No suit, no books.
They call me “artist” and I smile without speaking. Because inside I know I’m just someone with voices. Urging me on.
“Yes . . . more like that,” they sing. “More like that . . .” as I listen, and draw.