At The Water's Edge
At The Water's Edge: Articles
Sometimes I read things that I think are good examples of "following your bliss" or "finding your own way" and I'll try and list them here. This first one, which I read recently seems to be a perfect example:
Coincidentally, in the same magazine there's the story of
which is an extract from Shadows Bright As Glass, by Amy Ellis Nutt. In many ways it's a tragic story but I was taken by the description of the Sarkin's need to draw. And also the fact that the art he produced almost by accident started to earn him recognition and money. Here is the part referring to the need to draw: "At the end of the summer of 1994, he found himself picking up a flat granite stone. Suddenly its glacial veins seemed to liquefy in his hand, the colours leaping up in an almost violent demand for attention. He found an old nail and began to scratch and scrape it across the stone, not thinking, just following this compulsion to draw. The stone made him feel alive with possibility. When he'd finished, a sense of satisfaction and calm washed over him. Then he threw the stone into the sea. The image wasn't the point. The process was what it was all about."
Perhaps this is an appropriate place to refer to a line that I saw in a Guardian obituary around last Christmas (2010). I've been kicking myself ever since because I can't remember the exact phrase but it was basically saying that good artists make the most of what they've got: they adapt to their limitations, and in so doing they forge something from themselves which is unique. (The author of the obituary was far more eloquent - and if anybody can find the quote I'd be very grateful).
A friend lent me a book of Huraki Murakami which I enjoyed. I guess there was an element of writing about becoming a writer in it that I enjoyed. In today's Guardian article, I was particularly taken by the following:
How, then, did he find the confidence to do what he wanted?
"Confidence; as a teenager? Because I knew what I loved. I loved to read; I loved to listen to music; and I love cats. Those three things. So, even though I was an only kid, I could be happy because I knew what I loved. Those three things haven't changed from my childhood. I know what I love, still, now. That's a confidence. If you don't know what you love, you are lost."