My oldest child, and only daughter, is kicking-open the door of her teenage years. Since she was at least four, Maddie has spoken of nothing but becoming a doctor. She has a stack of anatomy books from past birthdays and even has been known to peruse the occasional medical journal for fun, when they are available. This had always been a bit of a shock to my artistic bones, but none-the-less, another source of pride. Whilst she was still in the womb, I had formed dreams of her artistic endeavors and my mini-dynasty… a lineage worthy of usurping the Peales and Wyeths in the art history books. My megalomaniac aspirations are not limited to her, I admit to wanting the same future for my sons, as well.
Recently, Maddie expressed a desire to exchange her medical school visions for a full-time career as a professional painter. Part of me was proud to see the fulfillment of the dreams that emerged the first time she painted on canvas at 18-months-old. Another part was sad, because I wanted her to have an easier financial life than the run-of-the-mill working artist.
My daughter has shared a studio with me for the past year. In May, she sold her first couple paintings to a dependable collector. In September, she donated an abstract work to an artists’ auction; while at the event she was the belle of the ball, mingling with other professional artists discussing her work and motivation. Not bad for a twelve-year-old. I might get that dynasty, yet.