What is Normal?

Who decides what is normal, and who wants to be normal anyway?

Come to think of it, I have, at times, wished I could just "be normal" and "be happy with the things that normal people want in life".

Decoded that means marriage, a house, kids, a regular job. Heck, I have had those things in life, but they haven't been on my radar for quite some time now. No matter how much I have wanted to feel normal, I instinctively knew those things would not, by themselves, make me happy.

I needed more. Somehow I need to feel I'm pushing the envelope of my life in order to feel happy. I have some kind of need to feel I'm making a difference in life.

Does the world really need another painting?

Maybe not. Although maybe the world needs me to feel the kind of hope that is needed in order to paint another painting.

Did you know that it takes hope to paint? Not only does it require hope, it requires Buckets of Hope!

—Hope I can match the vision I have in my head using the materials I use

—Hope other people feel entranced enough with the process to watch me paint or buy my painting

—Hope my vision or words touch someone enough to uplift them and give them Hope

That last one is the one I am hoping the most. I want YOU to feel deeply connected to YOUR own hopes and dreams. If I'm doing my job (painting) "right", the hopes and dreams I have while I'm painting are tangible in the results. My painting will stir something in you.

That's my contribution. That is how I make meaning in the world.

Connection is my word for the year. Connection has to start within. I have to feel connected to my inner being. Then I have to connect to my subject matter. Next I connect to my painting process and finally I connect to you through my painting.

YOU are my intended connection... well, YOUR connection to YOUR inner being is my intended connection.

See, it takes BUCKETS OF HOPE to make the connection — both yours and mine.