In first grade my teacher told me that I was good at drawing and I will never forget that. I still remember how great it felt to have someone believe in me and think I was good at something I really enjoyed doing. Over the years I have spent a lot of time dabbling in a variety of arts and crafts and being creative but I had never thought of myself as an artist. I always wanted to be, but didn't think I made or did anything that could be considered art.
This past summer I spent most of my time sewing and creating. Creating became a huge part of who I am. I would wake up with the desire to create. I began looking for art and inspiration all around me. One day I took myself on a date to the Walker Art Museum in Minneapolis. I had never been there before and decided I would go with the goal of having an open mind and to be looking for something to draw me in. I went through all of the exhibits, spent extra time with a few pieces but didn't find anything that really captivated me so I headed to the gift shop to browse a bit before leaving.
In the gift shop I saw a post card of a sculpture entitled, "Prometheus Strangling the Vulture II". This piece was outside in the sculpture garden. I was immediately intrigued. In elementary school I started learning about mythology and was fascinated by all of the stories. The story of Prometheus was quite memorable. The poor guy did mortals a favor by giving them fire from the gods and got chained to a rock for the rest of his life because of it. If that wasn't bad enough a bird would come every day and eat his liver...the liver would grow back only to be eaten again the next day. I was very interested in seeing a portrayal of him getting his revenge on that bird! So I headed outside to find the sculpture.
I was walking towards the garden and noticed this woman kind of wandering around, looking a bit lost. I kept walking trying to find the sculpture and all of a sudden this woman was in front of me. She asked if I was interested in buying some earrings. I was a little shocked as I had been absorbed in my quest, but asked to see them. She showed me a pair of gold earrings with roses on them. I was honest and said I probably wouldn't wear them. Then she asked if I had 50 cents. She said that she had seen me happy and smiling as I was walking and that I seemed like someone that would want to help. She needed to catch the bus. I usually don't have change but I had just spent 50 cents on the Prometheus postcard and had two quarters left. So I gave them to her and she thanked me and said she hoped I had a nice day.
I was very touched by the comment she had made about me smiling. I had been having a lovely time on my date and was excited to see the sculpture. It meant a lot to me that I was projecting joy with a smile even though I didn't realize it. If you have read my first post on here you know that I was very depressed this past spring. So to go from depressed to walking around smiling for no particular reason was huge for me. I pondered this as I kept walking. I walked around the entire garden and still couldn't find the sculpture. I took pictures for a few families and then asked some girls if I could see their map. I found the sculpture on the map and realized I had walked right by it! So I headed back to the front of the gardens. I was surprised when I found that the sculpture was right where the woman had stopped to talk to me.
I sat among the sculptures and thought about this for awhile. I had been looking for a sculpture, a piece of art but missed it because of the conversation I had with this woman. Then I realized I hadn't missed the art but that the interaction I had with the woman was art itself. I am making art with my life when I help and love others. I felt like Prometheus in the sculpture finally having victory over the eagle. I have joy, I am happy and I have victory over depression. I have a positive outlook on life and about myself.
There is a quote that has become special to me by Henry David Thoreau, that says:
To affect the quality of the day; that is the art of life.
That is how I came to discover that my life is a work of art and I am the artist.