"If you really want to upset your parents…go into the arts!"—Kurt Vonnegut
How many times have people been told that “You can't make it as an artist. "
How many times when you've told someone that you are studying theater, dance, the visual arts, do people look at you and cringe; feel sorry for you, and feel that you and your family have wasted a great deal of money, and that you have wasted years of your life.
How often when you tell people that you are involved in the arts, do people feel sorry for you because you won't be able to find a job or make it in the “real world".
A vocation has been described as “something you can't not do. "
Frederich Buechner has defined vocation as “the place where your deep gladness meets the world's deep need. "
A very wise man, Harold Babcock, has this to say, “Vocation is not simply about doing, but, at a much deeper level, it is about being. It is about what Thomas Merton called “one's true self, " that self that one is really meant to be, and that no one else can be. " Vocation is not always something we choose, much as we might like to thinks so; rather, it is often something which chooses us. "
An artistic vocation, sharing your beauty, depth, insight and wisdom with the world, is both a gift and a responsibility. People who have an artistic vocation often have having different priorities than other people. It means that having a fancy car, expensive house, designer clothes, is not as important as doing “the thing you can't not do. "
If you have a vocation as an artist, you are not different from the world, but rather you have been given an extraordinary gift, one that requires dedication, focus, courage, perseverance and hard work. Art is not for the faint of heart.
© Mary Baker 2005
Mary Baker is a contemporary realist painter, whose studio is in Newburyport, Massachusetts. This New England city, north of Boston, has been the inspiration for the artist’s realistic oil paintings. Mary Baker is a professional artist and has shown in New York art galleries. Mary’s art work has passion, depth and beauty, capturing moments in time that many people pass by.
Mary Baker hopes that if you have a vocation in the arts that you will share your artistic gifts and artistic voice and be delighted that your art brings much needed beauty, depth, wisdom and integrity to the world.
You can visit Mary’s website, Mary Baker Art, at http://www.marybakerart.com , see her beautiful paintings and read her comments on creativity, the creative journey, the creative process, Tips on Breaking the Creative block, Art, Artists and Money, and creative space—the illuminating silence.