One of my professors once said that we as storytellers sometimes tell the best the stories we need to hear the most.
At the time, I'm not sure I understood. But when I started this blog this past summer, that statement started to make a lot more sense.
Starting last year, and especially this summer through now, I've been challenged with a lot of hopelessness. Sometimes it's better than others. Some days are basically fine, and others I honestly don't know how to keep going, and no amount of logic or rationalizing can make sense of it or lighten its effects.
Originally this blog was planned as a sort of motivation to continue the practice of drawing; a way to push myself to draw during the summer and to build up my portfolio. Both these things are well and good and are a bonus of having the blog, but it's come to be so much more than just that.
I started drawing scenes that show the little joys in life, the hopeful moments when life seems most true and beautiful, as a way of convincing myself that those moments do exist, and that they are worth sticking the rest of it out. I needed to hear those stories, to teach myself that life is about more than the world says it is--that it is less about fame and power and money and politics and more about loving people and supporting each other when we cry and sharing joy with each other when we laugh and cooking together and dancing at weddings and telling the stories of those who have passed away and watching children play and singing loudly in the car because we can and because life is full of these wonderful things.
Sometimes it has been incredibly difficult to keep telling those stories. It's hard to keep creating something hopeful when you feel like that hope is a lie, even when you know it's not. But those days when it is the hardest to pick up my pen and draw hope are the days when I most need to do just that. I can't seem to reason myself out of hopelessness. But I can fight back. And I can fight to keep going because I know that the rest of the world needs that hope just as much and more than I do.
I'm very excited to share with all of you that for my Senior Project this year, I'll be doing just that. Over the school year, I will be continuing this blog as a sort of pictorial journal on the theme of hope. I'll still be focusing on the little moments that make life beautiful and say something about "what it means to be a human being," pulling from my own experiences as well as from the world around me, dreams of how things could be, and a hope for that future.
At least for now, it will be much the same as it was, except I'll be posting more often. Over the year I'll probably start adding other elements to it as well, but as of yet I don't have a specific plan, contrary to my normal perfectionist style. I think I want to keep it that way so I can let it be what it is and just see where it takes me.
I know there will be times throughout the year when it gets tough; when I might not be able to find enough hope to keep going on my own. I very much appreciate your support and encouragement, and as a practical part of that, I've added a page above called "Sharing Hope," where you can leave comments with requests, ideas and stories of things that have given you hope, so when I have none I can look to you for hope, too.
Though sometimes it doesn't seem that way, life is beautiful, and worth every moment.
I promise to remember that, and to do my best to remind you of that, too.