It is never “too late”…

It is never “too late”…


We recently received the following message in the Drawing Academy Survey from Omar.

Unfortunately, Omar didn’t provide his contact details; since we have no means to write him back directly, I’m posting this article in the hope that he will see the reply.

Omar’s message:

“I am 78 year young. I have painted and drawn most of my life. And I think that I am pretty good, for being self-taught. I am married for 55 yrs., no children, retired, living on a fixed income.

I was just reading about a painter that recently died. His bio said that from early in his life, he knew that he wanted to be a painter.

I just wish that that could be said about me. I have done everything to make a living except what I wanted to do. Shame, isn’t it? Thanks.”

Feedback from Vladimir London, Drawing Academy Tutor

Dear Omar,

I feel your regrets, and your message deeply touches me.

Over last two years, I have received many emails from people all over the world who say that they love art and wanted to become artists from the early age; however, life took that dream away and replaced it with the need to provide for a family, make a living, and go for more “certain” and “stable” careers.

I also get messages from older people who return to their childhood ambitions of becoming skillful artists. Their foremost question is, “is it too late?”

I’m coming from a younger generation and have no authority to comment or advise on what directions those people should or should not have taken in their lives.

However, I can cite some people with much greater authority. I hope you will find what they say inspirational.

Have you heard of Dr. Wayne Dyer? //

I really like his points of view on the importance of “finding your purpose” and “following your dreams.”

In his book, “10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace,” written in 2001, Dr. Dyer described the most important principles he wanted his children to live by.

One of these principles is “Don’t Die With Your Music Still In You,” which means that you should not allow yourself to live any life other than the one you were born to live.

Dr. Wayne Dyer is also an author of many other life-affirming books you may find reassuring, inspirational, and helpful.

You may also search on YouTube for his videos.

I also want to mention a novella by the great Russian writer, Leo Tolstoy – “The Death of Ivan Ilyich” (Russian: Смерть Ивана Ильича) written in 1886. It contains a very strong message about living life without being true to yourself, walking the path others expect of you.

IkigaiIn Japanese culture there is a concept called “ikigai”, which means “a reason for being.” They say that every one of us has an ikigai, and that it is very important to find what your purpose is. Searching for a self might take a time, but discovering one’s ikigai brings satisfaction and meaning to life. It gives a reason to get up in the morning, a reason to enjoy life.

The main message I want to deliver to my readers, is that it is never “too late.” If you can hold a pencil, you are fully qualified to pursue your artistic dreams and visually express your feelings, ideas, and everything you want to say to yourself and other people.

Think of your “ikigai,” and live the life you were born for. It doesn’t make any difference how long we have left here; if we pursue our purpose for being, it will bring satisfaction and meaning to our lives.

To your ikigai,

To learn how to draw skillfully,

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This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. Ramanathan Swaminathan says:


    Thanks for your precise response. The Ikigi concept is new to me but I could easily relate to Victor frankyl’s ” Man search for Meaning” a very goos read and grounded on real life situation and the concept is a life becomes worth living if one finds the purpose of living and becomes automatically inspired.

  2. Matthew says:

    Hey brother, I am inspired by your words, being in a similar situation, just a bit younger. I think there are a lot of people in our boat!!It is a moment of truth to realize that art is what we want to do, in knowing that, so much of our life makes sense now. So if we have to have a dayjob, I think that is okay, I see it as our “patron”. Also we can learn other things in our dayjob that enrich us as well. We have to look at this in a positive way. We also get to master the art of time management, squeezing every possible minute of spare time and putting it to art. So we are ‘double artists’!

  3. Loreto Ferroni says:

    Caro Omar anch’io mi trovo nella tua stessa situazione ,un pochino più giovane di te ma comunque con le stesse domande e poi mi rispondo lo faccio per me per il mio bisogno personale che per ovvi motivi non ho potuto intraprendere da giovane ho un po’ di rimpianto ma come tutte le cose se hai volontà ( non è mai troppo tardi) continua per te stesso. Ciao .

  4. Rosalie Rizzo says:

    I love that, “don’t die with the music still in you”. My problem is, I’m afraid to make a mistake and that stops me from drawing or painting. How can I overcome my fear and boldly go for it? I guess I don’t have confidence in myself. Fear of failure. Advice please.

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