“Screw College! I’ll Be An Artist”

As an immigrant kid with almost no English skills, my pencil and paper allowed me to create a world where all the characters spoke my language.

In my mind, I found refuge. An old friend told me he had to drag me out of the house to play.

As the years passed, I mastered the English language and continued developing my drawing chops. I imagine I must have put in thousands of hours.

Then I discovered comic books in the 90s, and I lost my mind. I would steal my father’s car every Tuesday to make my comic book run.

At this point in my story, I decided I wanted to be a comic book artist. I continued to work in my dungeon because I wasn’t that good.

I decided that college was not for me. I will be an artist. Mind you, this was before the IG, Twitter, or even the internet. It made perfect send at the time.

Then life happened. A lot of life happened.

Here I am 35 years later. My 10-year-old self would be a little upset that I wasted those skills. I’d give him a big hug for all those years of sacrifice, then smack him for his tone. Softly, of course.

Those skills weren’t wasted. They were just postponed.

Every time I sit to draw, my hand flows freely and fluidly. The lines are clear and confident. What is this brujería, I think.

Given the “lot of life” I’ve lived, I now have more stories to tell. What’s an artist without a story? A damn fool, I tell you.

Life is not a straight line, even when you’re an artist.

Nothing is wasted. We can connect the dots when life gives you a different perspective.

I will all make sense in the end.

By Teevee Aguirre