Try It, You Might Like It


“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C. S. Lewis

The arts are an integral part of my life. Over the years, I’ve engaged in a plethora of mediums ranging from painting and drawing to pottery and photography. Some time ago, I began writing a children’s story for my grandson with the intention of making it into a book. “Aha,” I thought. “Wouldn’t it be nice to include some watercolor illustrations?”

I imagined the soft, flowing quality of watercolor lending just the right characteristic to illustrate my story. But watercolor is one medium that I have not explored beyond self-instruction and a small watercolor pencil set. Initial results clearly showed my knowledge of the craft was insufficient to meet my goals. I needed an expert.

A few days ago, I attended my first watercolor class, taught by artist David Smith at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. It was time and money well spent. That’s not to say that my maiden voyage into this watery medium was noteworthy. It is to say I thoroughly enjoyed the comradery of fellow artists and learning techniques for using this medium.

The lesson is: if you’re unsure how to overcome an obstacle between you and your goal, get instruction from someone who really knows what they’re doing. Once you figure out how, it’s a matter of practice, practice, and more practice until you get the results you seek. My journey on the road to mastering the art of watercolor illustration has just begun.

The same thing about practice can be applied to writing a Spiritual Legacy Memoir, only it’s called editing. After I finish the first draft of an entry, I make edits until the words on the page are as clear, concise, and readable as I can make them. Not surprising, it gets easier with practice. I suppose this can be said about most things in life. Just don’t give up. Excuse me now. I have a date with some watercolor paints and paper.

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