The Art of Hope

"'Hope' is a thing with feathers-

That perches in the soul-

And sings the tune without the words-

And never stops- at all-"

-Emily Dickinson

I am an artist in the making. I started drawing when I was just a little girl; even the first thing I wanted to be was an artist. I still remember drawing with my quarter size crayons on a little plastic yellow easel for hours at a time. Then when I was done with my "drawing" I would skip over to my mother and show her what I made. She always told me in the Not-good-not-bad tone, "Very good." no matter how good or bad my piece was. She still even does that now when I ever show her my work. I guess she is just trying to make me force myself to do better. Kind of like dragging a bone in front of a dog trying to get them to run faster or pulling a piece of candy in front of a bunch of one year olds trying to get them to walk.

I can still remember the time were my childish hopes were foreshadowed by the demons of reality. After we moved from the city, I never drew anything. I didn't even doodle in school, which is something I can't even go a day without now. Even though I never picked up the artist pencil, I still had the small spark to draw again. Unfortunately, there was a big rock in my way, Artist Block. My childish imagination was turning into the realistic monster of the adult mind. Even if I did get something on paper, it didn't have that feeling I got when I was younger. It's like an energy that keeps you glued to the paper and creating. I spent four years trying to find something or anything that could fuel the spark and turn it into a fire once again. I searched through every type of art imaginable. Realism, abstract, and even tried my hand at landscapes, but all met with disaster. Trying to find a style of art you enjoy drawing is like trying to find the mole people from the planet Bob. I finally started running out of options, so I went to one of my last resorts. The book store, I know its sounds crazy, but I have known many a few artist that have found inspiration in books before. So, I took a trip to the mall and went to the first books store I saw. I flipped through tons of books and found nothing, I felt like I was trying to chisel through a diamond with my fingernail. After about an hour, I was about ready to leave. I headed in despair for the door, till something caught my eye. It was a book on a display, so I thought to myself what the heck. I've looked at every other book in this store. I went over to check it out. To my surprise it wasn't a book at all. It was a Japanese graphic novel (also know as a Manga) and then it hit as if one of the bookshelves fell on me. I just took one look at the cover and found my fuel. The cover was of a girl in a dress with angel wings that had the flow and the feeling that I had been searching for. At that moment I had made a pledge to myself right then and there. I would do my best to draw in the Manga and/or comic style of art.

As soon as I got home that day I dusted off my pencils and drew till my arm was felt like I was hit by a tank. My first works were not that good at all, but I didn't care at all. I was drawing on a dream, on that precious hope that I long, for so long.

For two years I drew every chance I could, in school, at home, in the car, even in amusement parks. I kept pushing myself to draw better, even though there was little hope I would actually realize that dream of mine. Then one day I was drawing and I found something that made my endless hoping worth while. The one thing every type of artist needs is their own style and I had found mine. It didn't look anything like a professional's art, but the one thing that I knew was, its mine and I was happy with it.

In high school, I decided to take a big step in my art. Give my pictures life or in other words, draw my first comic. Once again, the idea bank had gone dry. So, I enlisted the help on one of my best friends to help me come up with an idea. She had an idea in her head already, but wanted someone to draw it for her. Talawacky Comics was then born. My friend wrote it and I drew it. After about three comics, we both decided to show them to the public. Our first victims were our friends. Their laughs and their willingness to steal my sketch book made me see my hope may have a chance of coming true. When ever I can, I still show my comics to those willing to read them.

I have still had yet to get anything truly published, unless you count the internet. Yet, I still hope I do, so that the whole school and maybe the world may laugh at the tales of a school that is falling apart or get inspired like I did. It's hard to find hope that lasts a life time. Many hopes lie dormant as a result of reality and very few of our very first hopes are realized. The one thing I have learned about hopes is hopes never die, they're just lying dormant. Even the childish hope can last a life time and you are never too old to bring that hope back to life.