truer colors

February 10th, 2019

This is a picture of my daughter and some of her friends before they went to prom last spring. When I posted it on Facebook, people kindly said they looked like movie or rock stars, brilliant and beautiful. That’s true for all young people, and yet it seems especially so for this group of young actors, writers, and filmmakers.

In the foreground is my daughter, Georgia, with her favorite cinematic artist, Dylan.

When people ask me how my daughter enjoyed her experience at an arts high school, I rarely give the answer they expect. The fact is, it’s hard to be an artist. There is doubt, discouragement and rejection. There are endless obstacles and outright impossibilities. You don’t get the part; you don’t get the prize. You fall apart. So I say something else. I say the life of an artist—like each of our lives—is a life of pain. That’s how the light gets in. That’s how the song gets sung.

Right now, Dylan is trying to raise money to make the final film of his high school career. It’s such an outsized undertaking that he has to ask for help from strangers, and that’s where I come in. Even if you can only give a little drop in the bucket, that helps enormously. As a small-time author, I carry a bucket, so I know that every drop counts. If his campaign link isn’t visible below, you can find it at this Go Fund Me page.

Since I’ve been spending some time looking at this year-old photo, I’ve realized that everyone is still pursuing their art, even with personal setbacks, turnabouts, and a fair share of rotten luck. They haven’t given up on themselves, and they haven’t given up on each other. These are the seers and scribes, the poets and storytellers, who will paint tomorrow’s world in truer colors. Take inspiration from them, and if you can, give a little bit back. Encouragement is never wasted.

Dear friends, I am profoundly and deeply grateful for your gifts.

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