I remember when I was about…17, 18 years old, riding in the car with my Mom. Years ago. I forgot where we were going or coming from. I don’t wear my emotions on my sleeve or talk about how I feel very often. Yet, my Mom has a way of getting things out of me. Both my parents do.
Our conversation centered around what I wanted to do with my life. What do I have a passion for? What do I think my gifts are? We ended up going by the art galleries in Downtown Fort Lauderdale. I would visit them on the weekends after going to the movies (the theater was close by). So, my life consisted of movies and art. 🙂
I explained to my Mom that I enjoyed looking at the fine art paintings, sculptures, and drawings. Yet, throughout high school, I tried to excel in these types of classes only to discover I had talent in neither of them. She encouraged me to keep looking into it, but soon after I wandered off from this path.
Late 2015, enter 2016, staring at the approach of my 38th Birthday, I realized I’m getting older. 😦 What happened to the time? I began to feel the tug even more to change something drastically. I asked the Lord for direction once again. What am I missing? What am I doing wrong?
I came across a message on The Positive Nation that struck a chord. Essentially, it begged me to ask the question: Am I putting my energy in the right direction? Back to Barnes & Noble. Yes, BN is where I go to think these days when I need to clear my head.
Browsing through publications I’ve submitted to and been rejected by before, I realized these aren’t working. Something’s a bit off here. In my gut, I felt I was in the right area, but not exactly the right section. To the left along the wall I kept looking for…something. Until one magazine caught my eye:
As I read the articles it was like someone turned the light on. So much information to digest. I took notes. Researched. I found where I belong. Took all the commercial photography off of my main website deciding that’s not who I am.
It was a break away from how I was taught in college. They all told me if you want to make a decent living, you have to go commercial. I listened. It did not work for me. Still, the logical part of my brain screamed, “What are you doing?!” I understood. But the peace I felt in my heart overruled any concerns I had. I couldn’t explain why.
That was my weekend. The dreaded Monday morning arrived. I was unmotivated to sift through more potential commercial projects on job sites. I chose to do something crazy and went to Job Boards on Art sites. What did I have to lose?
I had done this before, years ago, only to run into a dead end. Since my college classes focused on the commercial side of photography, we learned little of the Art History side. I wasn’t qualified to work in an art gallery without a Bachelor’s Degree in Art History and Sales experience of high-end fine art.
I searched anyway, to the dismay of the more logical side of my mind. I stumbled upon a local gallery listing that was odd, indeed. They only wanted someone with a passion for the arts, even absent an Art History degree. No way. I’ve never tried selling an artist’s work before, but… Why not?
My resume was already prepared. I only worked feverishly on editing my cover letter until I felt good with what I had. Submit. I began to tackle my normal day. Two hours, three hours later, my phone rang. It was the gallery. I had an interview the next day. No way.
Tuesday afternoon’s interview went quite well. I really wanted her to tell me I had the job right then. She did have two more interviews scheduled for yesterday, so I needed to wait for a response. You can imagine how on edge I was yesterday, Wednesday.
Ice cream. Chunky chocolate chip cookies. Raisinets. Then, I walked to 7-Eleven and brought a Slurpee. Then, I went to the Fitness Center here at the apartment complex to exercise and do cardio. I had so much sugar in my system trying while trying to stay…calm. Hmm. Now that I say that out loud, it makes no sense.
I did get the call back today. A 2nd Interview is Saturday morning. I think I got the position. I just need that solid, “yes.” I can’t take anymore sweets. No. My body has crashed. Instead, I’m writing this blog while eating cereal right outta the box. (Bowls are overrated).
Um, the gallery is owned by one artist. He has two galleries here in Vegas. One in California and Hawaii. He wants to open another venue in New York. Needless to say, it would be a great opportunity for me to be involved in this area of the industry. This is a better fit for me.
A few posts ago, I talked about the teaching I listened to during a Bible Study. The Speaker talked about how God works and miracles, etc. So, I said, Lord, I don’t want a bunch of stuff. I just need one miracle. One thing to give me a boost in the right direction and I can go from there.
I get to the Las Vegas Strip to go in for the Interview on Tuesday. I look around thinking, okay, I’m here early so I’ll just sight-see for a while. It’s like a mini-mall there. I look at the sign on the side of one building that reads something like, “Welcome to Miracle Mile.”
Funny. ([whispers] & slightly creepy)? No wonder people say God has a sense of humor. Last note, I also mentioned my student loans being out of wack again in that same blog a few posts back. Well, the company emailed me yesterday saying they understand payments can be expensive and they’re willing to work with my budget more to ease the pressure.
Don’t wake me up. If you guys see me asleep right now, just let me stay asleep. This dream is starting to get a bit of sunshine; I want to see how all of this turns out. All of the fellow artists, art organizations, etc. I’ve contacted or connected with this week have been Super. I feel right at home.
I have to end by saying “thank you” everyone for not throwing the towel in…or at me. Even after my minor meltdown. It’s very easy to be supportive when everything’s going good, but when things look terribly bad, well… Not so much. I salute you & freely give virtual hugs.
Any tips on how to quell anxiety? I am typing at the moment, yet, it feels like I’m bouncing off the walls. Memo to me: Chocolate does not help. 🙂
God bless you.
Eric Christopher Jackson