It’s Never Too Late to Become an Artist
Of the countless reasons we love our Over 60 Competition, the inspiring stories we receive from the artists themselves tops the list. Many of the winners from The Artist’s Magazine‘s Over 60 Competition are beginners or new to the art world, offering us the necessary perspective to never give up on your dreams.
Below are 10 inspiring messages from past winners. Whether they’re returning to art after a life away from it or going through personal battles, these artists will get you running to your easel. Enjoy!
“I don’t have a hard theory on what I try to communicate with my work, nor a message. I just love to paint, to tell myself a story, and if others want to come along for the ride, they’re welcome.”
Karlene Koch Voepel
“If you’re older, don’t be shy about going back to school. And don’t give up! This year I’ve been fighting breast cancer and it hasn’t been easy. But I knew the reward at the end of the tunnel would be painting, painting, painting!
“I’ve often thought about entering one of The Artist’s Magazine’s competitions, but this time I thought, I’m over 60—that means me! Since my hand it still pretty steady and I’d recently finished this piece, I gave this competition a try. The rest is history.”
“After winning the Best Artist award at my sixth-grade graduation, my folks, to the dismay of my art teacher, thought it best that I focus on math and science. It would be 45 years before I picked up a brush again! When I retired from a computer consulting company, I set out to reacquaint myself with my boyhood love.”
“I was a creative director for more than 35 years. While working and raising my son, my only painting consisted of weekend and vacation watercolors In 2009, I took up oil painting again and combine it with freelance design. Painting has taken over my design work, and I’ve started answering the question “What do you do?” with “I’m an artist!”
“I studied art at Brigham Young University but pursued a career in business. Several years ago while visiting my father, who’s also an artist, I asked him to help me paint. That rekindled a dormant passions, and I’ve been on an intense program ever since to learn as much as I can about painting.”
“In 1998 I found out I had breast cancer, which required a year of treatment. I’ve tested cancer-free ever since, but during the next 12 years, I became my husband’s caregiver. I didn’t quit painting. Painting became my lifeline: a way to keep centered and sane.”
“Despite a lifelong love for art, I’ve had no formal art education. Just a few workshops and painting en plein air have been my teachers. Although my art journey began late in life, the time lost has been made up for in the emotional and visceral impact it has had on me.”
“When you teach, you learn what you believe about creating art. I believe those words with all my heart. When I retired from teaching in a public school, teaching workshops was a natural course for me, and I’ve been painting and teaching ever since.”
Patricia A. Walsh
“As a corrections officer, I had to find ways to stay creative—from making quilts to studying graffiti. By the time I retired, I was fully committed to painting. Love of learning seems to be endangered, and I do think that as we age we become more aware that our lives are made up of moments and it’s important to enjoy each one of them.
Always remember, it is never too early or too late to start following your dreams. How old were you when you decided to start making art? Tell us in the comments below!