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When people walk into my room, they often comment on all my art on the wall. They don’t know how I believed I’d never make art like this.

I wear my world on my sleeve, so to speak. I remember hiding in the library at school, half the time I’d be reading stories or books about psychology or religion, the other half of the time I’d be drawing.

I almost failed GCSE art. I dropped out of Art A-level after a month.

I knew I loved making art, and yet I could barely pass the class.

For years I doubted my ability, lacking formal training, how could I really make art? How could I be an artist?!

And still I kept at it. In fits and starts, not so much an undeniable impulse but more like a slowly building pressure, only relieved by the soothing sound of colours stroking the page.

There is, simply, nothing like it.

Once I start, I never want the process to end at the same time as impatiently longing to see the finished picture.

I couldn’t jump through the hoops of formal training because, frankly, I just wanted to make art.

I dropped out of art class after a month.

I wanted the skills, but the formality was destroying me.

When I went to university to study Philosophy I secretly thought I’d left art, sadly, irrevocably, behind me. I could still draw, doodle, play, but I could never really be an artist.

But then I found myself painting, drawing, more and more… I painted my thoughts out for an essay, then wrote the essay based on the painting. Friends loved the art I made, asked me to make piece for them, which sit proudly on their walls.

Somehow, I’d dropped out, and tuned in.

Somehow, as an art-class drop-out, I found I could still be an artist.

I am grateful that I only gave up on my dream for a moment, and, in returning to myself, I find myself here… making art.

It makes me wonder what dreams the people around me have given up on, even if they haven’t realised it. It reminds me why the old cliché exists: it is never too late to do what you love, to be who you are, regardless of what the world might think.

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