My first ever attempt at painting as a teenager was an oil of Leon Russell. It’s not good but I still keep it near my art table as a reminder of the curiosity and determination of the young, inexperienced and carefree me. Some times I look at it and cringe at the crudeness of it and other times I smile at the memory of sitting at the kitchen table and trying so hard to do something I had no idea how to do but wanted so badly to be good at.
A little over a year ago I read something that resonates with so many meanings relative to life but particularly in regards to my art journey. It reads, in part, about how in the beginning you have to fight through doing something you have a taste for. About how you have to fight through all the disappointments. And that when you continue to feel that whatever you created doesn’t seem good enough, that means you have good taste and that you have to keep trying. And how eventually you will close the gap and your work will be as good as your ambitions.
This year the miniature marquee on my art table has read: Close The Gap. While most days it goes unnoticed, there have been many that I have paused long enough to take the encouragement and the challenge of the three little words. I don’t know if I am quite as good as my ambitions (which I’ve never really given a hard thought to) but, having recently done a similar Leon Russell painting as the one I began with, I can say that the gap is in fact closing.