Many years ago, when I still didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up, I dreamt of becoming a biologist. A botanist, to be specific. I love plants, the science of horticulture, plant genetics, GMO, and just simply the existence of plants and flowers. I like to look at them, I like to read about them, I like everything about them. But there are no jobs for a botanist so I quickly convinced myself that I wasn’t that interested in it after all. It’s a weird thing to repress about yourself, but somehow it felt better to convince myself that I wasn't that interested in it, than to admit disappointment.
So instead, I planned on being an engineer. My ten year older brother was my idol and role model in everything, and he was an physics engineer. I wasn’t really interested in physics, so I wanted to study chemical engineering instead. But the university hadn’t started up that program yet, and I needed to improve my grades, so a couple of years went by.
By then, I had worked at Systembolaget, the state owned liquor store chain that has the monopoly on selling alcohol in Sweden.
My interest in natural science was suddenly joined by a deep and profound wish to do good, to help people. The misery I saw among the customers and my inability to help them, grew to a frustration, and I decided that whatever career I chose, it would have to be something where the purpose of the work was to do good. So I became a doctor, and I haven’t regretted it for a minute.
So why am I writing this, and what does it have to do with my art?
Well, I feel I growing longing to revive my passion for nature and plants in my art, and I've taken the first, small steps towards being able to do that
My work is usually abstract and consists of me throwing things at other things until it becomes art, and I cannot draw or paint for shit. So I have to start at the beginning, which for me means the purchase of books. I have ordered several, but I’ve started to read and do the exercises in one of them, Nature Drawing & Watercolor by Peggy Dean, and I love it.
My work looks like something a child would make, and I struggle with simple things like the shapes of leaves, but it’s so much fun! I’m ridiculously proud of the first flower I’ve drawn from the book, and I have so much ideas on how to incorporate this in my art when I’ve gotten a little more skilled.
Nature is beautiful, and plants are fascinating. I can’t believe I somehow forgot about that.