2007. Siberia. Russia. A colleague of mine shared her excitement about evening art classes she had been attending.
– why don’t you come with me? – she said.
– me?! well… it sounds like fun, but.. no-no. I can’t draw a straight line.
– you don’t have to! the first class is free anyway and we have oil paint on sale now.
I really wanted to go (deep inside, deep, deep inside), but I wouldn’t have done it (as usual fear of failure would have kept me home) if not for my niece, who was visiting from out-of-town and REALLY wanted to go. Seriously, she was jumping up and down until I agreed to this idea. The girl was 18. Just very excited.
I had oil paint, oil, one brush and canvas board, which my teacher broke in half so that both her and I will get a painting surface. (skipping some boring details about introduction, setting up and choosing the subject)
Excited. Terrified. Blushing like on a big exam I started painting. Why so nervous? I think only a specialist can figure out why I was so scared of failure even in small daily events. But there I was. I don’t remember what got me though this evening, but now I’m convinced it was divine grace.
Here is what I came out of that first free painting class with:
Oh, boy, was I excited. The teacher saw it, smiled and said: “In about 10 sessions when you start to understand what is going on, you are really going to enjoy this!” He is a brilliant man – my first art teacher – next post will be about him.
Interestingly enough, my niece didn’t continue painting. Sometimes I think she was like a flashlight blinking in the dark to show me the way
Thank you for your time.