Paint your picture

Art for beginners: How to draw, paint and more, according to artists | The IndependentThe 12-year me was sick of just painting on plain-old papers. They would start scraping due to the sheer amount of water I would use to paint it. I hated it. I wanted to paint like the older kids in my art class on a canvas with acrylic paint and fancier brushes. Learn new techniques. I was so jealous of them because they looked so cool, painting all those brilliant paintings. I wanted to be one of them. 

My art teacher finally gave me a chance to paint a canvas with her help. This was the moment I had been waiting forever since I had joined the art classes. I knew it had to be perfect. As soon as I picked up the brush and made the first stroke, I sensed how difficult it was going to be. I gave myself a pep-talk that this was going to be a piece of cake. All that went to waste because I had failed miserably. My first canvas was a disaster. The tulips looked dead and the patchy background added to the hideousness. I felt slightly embarrassed because this was my one chance to show my skills.

Little did I know that life is full of patterns and that in the future, I would still want to do newer and bigger things for the first time, just like my younger self did. Recently, I got the chance to work on my first client project. I was thrilled to work with such a big client and eager to learn all about the field. My excitement didn’t last quite that long. I found myself in a place where I was unsure of my work, and I could not communicate my thoughts and opinions to the client. I was disappointed with myself. I knew that I hadn’t put in my 100% because I was too scared of saying something. I didn’t want them to think I was incapable.

Furthermore, I was soon going to be living in a new country on my own while also looking for my first big girl job. Even though I am so excited for the opportunities that would come my way, a part of me is also scared. What if I don’t get a job? What if I get a job and don’t earn enough to meet my needs? I do not want to rely on my parents anymore. I am so grateful for the education they have provided me with, and I want to make them proud. I wanted to have a decent job with good pay, enough to pay my own bills and meet my needs.

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The pattern was repeating itself! I was so scared of these things and I wanted them to be perfect on the first try. I had already made myself believe that I was incapable of doing all these things. My self-confidence had shaken, and it made me so anxious. Failing was not an option. 

Twelve-year-old Vamika would totally ridicule the 21-year old Vamika for thinking that she was going to get it all right in one go. My younger- self did not give up after making that awful painting. She pestered her art teacher to let her paint one every week! She did not give up after seeing her dreadful strokes. She kept at them till they looked somewhat acceptable. And soon, she started painting her own canvases without any assistance. It was only her hunger to learn that had made it possible.

In our journey of life, there are so many things that you experience for the first time. But, how well you do at those firsts does not define your potential. You do. Don’t beat yourself up over a bad decision or an undesirable outcome. Although it might be a rocky road, you need to make your way through by constantly going at it, not giving up. Keep making those strokes. One day, it is all going to come together, stroke by stroke. And you are going to create your own masterpiece.

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