Follow Your Dreams
CHASING THE LIGHT
As I contemplate the past 35 years of being able to live my passion - that of expressing myself and making a fine living as a sculptor - I cannot help but recall some of the challenges and even some of the heartaches along the way. So often when we see someone at the pinnacle of their career or reaping the fruits of their labors we are oblivious to their struggles and challenges to get to the top of that particular mountain. And not only that, ofttimes those who have made the ascent, forget themselves or undermine their accomplishments simply out of being so passionate about their desires that there could be no other way. There was not even a question as to making the journey and arriving at their destination! Those of us that have climbed the peaks and at times ‘waged the wars’ so to speak, also intentionally or subconsciously, block out some of those battles because of their pain and sometimes bloody wounds.
For example - as a highly visible sculptor, oft times my work is plagiarized or copied by those wishing to profit from my creativity - to the extreme that I’ve had to spend exorbitant amounts to not only protect my copyrights but prove in courts of law that it was my original idea in the first place! Memories that have caused me massive discouragement several years ago, not to mention resources. It was like, why would I go to such great lengths to come up with highly successful and popular sculptures that were derived from personal life’s experiences, only to have unscrupulous companies copy them and then sell them at prices far below what I can even produce them for - because I choose to not have them cast in China. And then there are the struggles and pressures of being responsible for others livelihoods via bi-monthly payrolls.
What qualities would I say one must have who chooses to ‘chase the light’ and follow their dream and passion? Of course the obvious would be courage
“NOTHING IS MORE POWERFUL THAN AN IDEA WHOSE TIME HAS COME” Victor Hugo
and ‘stick-to-it-ness’. But the real lynchpins I would have to say are FAITH and PASSION. PASSION is that desire that cannot be stopped. A very well known contemporary of mine once said “I’d sculpt even if it was illegal!” It’s that enthusiasm and deeply soul-rooted DNA that stirs not only one’s own blood - but mankind’s! Bottom line though -- one must simply have FAITH in so many things. Some call it hope. Same thing. It’s somehow thinking that the Universe is not only able, but is going to align a whole bunch of stuff in order for something to come to pass. As it says in Paulo Coehlo’s book, THE ALCHEMIST “the universe ‘conspires’ to make one’s very clear intentions happen!”. It’s a daily faith in people, places, emotions, things, etc. etc. Sometimes we even resort to superstition to get us through the struggles. I simply say ‘whatever it takes’ .... angels, messengers, higher powers, guardian angels, sculpture gods - whatever; I know I can do it, I know it can be done, I know it will turn out. And with each new creation, my faith builds! Gary Lee Price - FNSS