I read this in a book the other day and I can’t stop thinking about it. Literally. I love how the words string together and somehow the simile connects on a visceral level.
“.. life is a portrait. It’s a picture you paint everyday, every minute, every second, with the palette you were given at birth. It’s an expression of yourself, whether you want it to be or not. Make sure it’s a picture you are proud of..”
For a while there I found myself thinking about all those men and women who have somehow aged so gracefully that there seems to be a beacon shining from within. I just hit 40 so vanity demanded I look in the mirror and assess. Yes – I have wrinkles and ‘bad skin’. Crows feet and lines on my face. My hands have veins popping out and the skin is dry most of the time. Truthfully – I got worried there for a bit.
Ok – Deep breath. Inner calm.
I need to work with the palette and get control on my colours, school my expressions better and so on.
It did not work.
And then I got thinking again. This is me. My face. My body bears the marks of my journey through life. My palette has not always been of jeweled tones and candied hues. There have been harsh greys and some blacks too. But if you look closely enough there are more laugh lines than frown lines. The crows feet appear every time I smile. The bad skin tells me just how passionate I am – the hormones that still go crazy and pour out on my skin. The dry skin is a result of years of love with my paints, thinner and acetone. It is an outcome of the many times I forgot to put moisturizers and creme because the smell and feel of paint and thinner was too seductive to wash away. I wrote of me some years ago… you can read that here. You can also read more here.
I will still try and paint a portrait worth looking at. It is a work in progress. I have a few more years yet to finish it I hope. But I do believe the current version is an honest reflection of me.
Does your ‘portrait of life’ reflect you?
I thought I would leave you with a portrait of me I did some years ago as well as a link to an animation of one I attempted later…
Note- Not the best quality photograph. The painting is more vibrant though and me even more so in real life – I promise! (tongue firmly in cheek here)