Saturday, January 24, 2009

Taking Risks - week 3 of Secrets of Highly Creative Women

The subject of week three, taking risks, is one close to my heart.
I have often taken risks and had things not turn out how I planned. Lately I have been regrouping in a big way and wondering if I made many many mistakes with my strange and seemingly random choices.
But even in failure, there are lessons - in 2005 I planned a long long awaited for month in Paris. I was asked to do some illustrations for a book, so I worked out the whole month to be there to do the groundwork, then I was UN-asked - the author chose another artist . . . . but you know what -- I went anyway.
I have to tell you that I suffered a bit on that trip - lots and lots of things went wrong:
*my outgoing flight got canceled and I had to buy a last minute plane ticket for $1500 so my budget was shot and I had almost no money there.
*Luggage got lost and I had no clothes or shoes for 2 weeks - ended up getting HUGE mongo blisters from wearing my one pair of shoes
*family issues too private to go into here but it was tough
*apartment was not what I hoped for - very small, hot and loud
*got sick, like I used to always get when I traveled - now I know I have Celiac disease but i did not know it them and you know I was indulging in tons of amazing pastries and bread.
But I learned a lot, I grew a lot, I now know Paris pretty well, and I got lots and lots of art out of it.
I made some cool connections there, and some awesome friends came to visit me and we hung out In Paris - and what is better than that?
and I got to see Lance Armstrong ride into Paris for his 7th Tour De France victory and that was almost worth the whole trip.
I still want to go back to Paris, with more planning, a better place to stay, more time with just my camera and journal, and now with the learning curve I "suffered" through behind me, I think I could make it a better month.
But you know what?
I am still glad I went.

"Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down." -Ray Bradbury


  1. When you go back, you're gonna have Paris in the palm of your hand! How brave of you to go the first time, and you must have really stretched and strengthened alot of muscles then.

  2. I plan and things do sometime change with out of knowing it.
    But so glad your willing to visit Paris again.
    Hope it will be more smoothies this time around.

    Coffee is on.

  3. It sounds like Paris really calls to you - all those things went wrong and you STILL made loads of great art! Wow.

  4. Em, is this from the book you are following? Sounds like fun.

  5. Oh what fun (in spite of all the issues you had)! I love, love, love Paris but have only spent a week there at a time. A whole month would be delicious!

    Thanks for sharing this brave story. Enjoy your next trip there!

  6. Despite all the setbacks (or because of them?) you took the wonder not the mess with you from that experience. What an awesome risk. :)

    MAy you go to Paris soon, just they way you envision it.

    On a sidenote: I am following your blog but my blog roll isn't updating it. Stupid blogger. I will be checking your blog from now on whether it says you have updated or not. :)

  7. Sometimes, I've found, it's the issues we overcome that become the memories that we remember the most and make the journey so worthwhile. I dream of Paris one day...I'm glad you went anyway.
    Peace & Love,

  8. Makes me wonder what your life would be like without the trip! I mean, it sounds like that trip had so many lessons to be learned that while it was not perfect, it was what you needed at the time...