One of the benefits of being an artist is that everything that happens to you – no matter how traumatic or frustrating, it at least one hidden benefit; It can be used in your art. A painful parting can become a powerful breakup anthem. Melancholy mixes in with your oil paints and transforms an ordinary image into something deeply moving. A mistake creates an insight that leads to an innovation, to a new angle on an old idea, to a brilliant passage in a book.
A writer – and, I believe, generally all people – must think that whatever happens to him/her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our story, your art.
Everything becomes material. We can use it all. And again, not just artists. Issues we had with our parents become lessons that we teach our children. An injury that lays us up in bed becomes a reason to reflect on where our life is going. A problem at work inspires us to invent a new product and strike out on our own. These obstacles become opportunities.
My time cycling is my art. It’s where I find the opportunities to release Brian, become who I truly believe I am. We all want to be the artist that turns pain and frustration and even humiliation into beauty. We all want to be the entrepreneur that turns a sticking point into a money maker. We all want to be the person who takes their own experiences and turns them into wisdom that can be learned from and passed on to others.
My thought’s, use it all. Find purpose in all of it. Find an opportunity in everything. Be the painter of your own picture, the sculptor of your own life.
Hopefully, I see you on the road.
By Brian Nadon