Recently I came across a photo from art school and wondered, "What would I tell my 20-year-old self now?"...
1. Don't hold too tightly to anything...letting go allows you to let other, greater things in. Honestly...you'll learn this to be true.
2. Enjoy the process...seriously. The work is so much fun, don't worry about what you 'should' do or how to do it, just have fun in whatever you do and it will fall into place.
3. Nothing happens overnight...it takes time to build a portfolio, and more importantly, to build your character.
4. The tough stuff, both personally and professionally, usually precludes the good stuff. Those 'dark nights of the soul' are necessary for growth and development.
5. Don't be afraid...I know that at 20 you think you feel infallible but fears do arise. Let them go. Just breath.
6. Be kind and gracious to others. And when you aren't, because there will be those times, apologize.
7. Don't complain...don't fall into the trap of negativity...you always have a choice.
8. Keep working. Whether that is caring for yourself, your home, your family...Apply yourself and do your best.
9. Do it your way. There is no one-size-fits all method of success. Trust your heart.
10. Keep learning...by talking to others, reading, taking classes. Even if it doesn't feel connected to what you do, it will trigger ideas.
(Excerpt from Sacred Vessel: A Painter's Handbook available through Alberta public libraries or under 'Books' link on the right side of this page.)