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When I was a child, I was surrounded by people who were naturally artistic. My mother could draw anything she saw, my brother shared this drawing ability and he also made beautiful string art. My sister could do anything artistic she set her mind too…painting, drawing, crafts, and beautiful engraving. As for me, if I could draw a shaky stick figure it was a good day. My mother would coach me, “just draw what you see.” That didn’t work, what I saw in my head didn’t make it to my hands. I felt like an artistic failure. Until one day about 18 months ago, when it all changed.

I was bored and I wanted something artistic to do. My soul was craving creativity. I thought, “hmm, lets try a paint by numbers painting”. I ordered a big paint by numbers cat off Amazon and when it arrived, I eagerly opened the package. I took out the canvas and stared at all the little numbered spots, I examined the paint pots carefully, and rolled the brush in my hands. It felt good, so I sat down and began working on it. The brush felt right in my hand, the colors seemed to naturally flow, and I felt like I’d finally found my calling. There was a sense of peace as I was working on it. When I finished it, the multicolored cat was beautiful. It didn’t look silly or funny, so I ordered another kit. This time a wolf. As I progressed with the wolf, the thought, “I can do this without paint by numbers. I could do a real painting”, kept popping into my head. I finished the wolf and again, it was beautiful. Except this time, I took away a feeling of confidence. A confidence in that I had finally found my artistic calling.

I purchased a basic set of acrylic paint colors, a few basic brushes and began watching video tutorials. I was right, I’d found my niche.

The moral of this story is don’t give up on yourself. It took me 54 years to find my creative outlet. Be patient with yourself, each thing you do, whether you do it well or not, is a step on your journey to creative awareness. Take the time to enjoy the process of learning what you like or don’t like. Enjoy the journey!

My first paint by numbers

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