“You shouldn’t paint mermaids and jellyfish anymore”
Those words cut deep when I heard them, leading to self doubt and insecurity. We all want to be successful at what we do, so when you’re on a new path and already unsure if what you’re doing will ever be something successful, you wonder if that unsolicited advice is valid.
However, there is one great thing about getting older: you have heard this before, and frankly get tired of doing things because of what people think you should be doing.
This experience, painting a mural for the city, was validation that I am on the right path. About a year ago, I had a few whispers of doubts about the vibrant colors I love to use and the subjects I painted. I love the sea, and all things that live there whether real or mythical. When you start off on a new path, well the money doesn’t come quick, and the days are long full of hardworking and tears. Then comes a day when it what you do can be done in your sleep. That’s how I feel about jellyfish. When I was approached to paint jellyfish for a new mural project in town, I laughed and thought, “I could do that in my sleep.”
When it was time to complete the project, I was of course really nervous about messing up. I mean, what are the process steps for painting on a street? Are you sure you want me to do it this? This isn’t a canvas, and the process doesn’t include everything I would normally do.
Even with this doubt swirling in my head, I was shocked and excited thinking, “I’ve been painting jellyfish for years, and someone wants me to put this in a public location for all to see?” It was surreal, and it still is! The thing that I was told I shouldn’t do, but comes so naturally to me, really is worth something that makes people feel good. Like I said before, this was confirmation that I am on the right path.
Drone shot by Tiffany Danielle Photography