Being an artist was not my first choice. Frankly, I never knew it could be a choice at all. To me, artists were magical beings, fearless and gifted, born with gargantuan imaginations akin to the power of superheroes. Art seemed too important, too precious for me to violate with my amateur ideas and crude skills. Art was for looking, for admiring, for experiencing. That would have to be enough.
So although I was not going to be an artist, I was determined that my life be anything but boring. As the drama and adventures began to unfold, I came to see my life as a series of starring roles in a string of Hollywood films. Here are just a few of the storylines:
- Young teenage girl sexually assaulted by gang of teenage boys, fights for their conviction. Eventually graduates from university with a degree in Women’s Studies, and goes on to pursue law school.
- College girl backpacks through Europe for the summer, meets a tall, dark stranger and moves to the south of France for her first great love affair — and learns to speak French
- Young lawyer conquers Manhattan, negotiating billion dollar deals in the boardroom by day, dancing up a storm in the clubs by night. On her precious days off, she secretly trolls art galleries and museums, art books and magazines, wondering what if…
- Junior associate at New York law firm transferred to Singapore, works in India, travels throughout Asia, begins to see the world anew.
- Traumatized by 9/11 and approaching 30, New Yorker quits her lucrative job and discovers she is an artist. Friends, family and colleagues are inexplicably and freakishly supportive.
I have studied at eight universities, earned three degrees, worked on three continents and lived in six different cities around the world. So far, my life has not been simple or straightforward, but now it is all fodder for my art.
Since graduating from OCAD University in 2009 with the medal in Drawing and Painting, I have been working in Toronto as a full-time artist. And I now know that artists are indeed not magical beings, but hard-working, obsessive, passionate mortals.