You are your only competition
DIYA MURALISHANKAR shares her love of painting, baking and generally being confident in expressing herself and her feelings.
As teenagers, we’re plagued with questions about our existence, but all I’ve ever known for sure is that I was created to express myself freely. At some point in my childhood I picked up a crayon like every other child, the only difference being that I couldn’t put it down after that. My love for art later translated into a love for baking because I see cakes as edible art.
Both of these started as random flashes of inspiration, either from a book, a movie or an incident in my life, and gradually turned into a form of self expression. But it didn’t start out great. I burned numerous batches of brownies, as well as my mother’s favorite tablecloth, and once I dyed my cupcakes a sickly shade of green so that no one could bear to eat them. My hands were stained with paint multiple times and we once extracted dried glue from my hair.
With some practice, art and baking went from being mere hobbies to a way of life. I found comfort in my brush strokes and satisfaction in the happy smiles of the people who ate my goods. Having just one hobby is never enough – the world is too exciting a place for that! However, all my hobbies, including art, baking and singing, revolve around creating something from nothing, something unique that portrays my individuality.
As I got older, doing all this for myself wasn’t enough, so I started hosting Bake Sales along with a couple of my friends. We raised money for a charity that helps less fortunate young women of my age to lead a life of dignity and freedom by providing them with a year’s worth of sanitary pads and hygiene products. As for my art, I started painting for my loved ones, because gifting them a painting or a sketch felt like sharing a piece of myself with them. I’d like to thank all my loved ones for keeping my artwork no matter how strange it is.
My art teacher was one of the main reasons I never lost hope in my work, even in the face of high competition. He saw something in me that I didn’t, so I held on to that and trusted his judgment.
Tapping into my own potential has always been challenging, because creative hobbies are often accompanied by self doubt. However, it gets easier once you realize that comparing your work with that of others is pointless. Their work reflects who they are and not who you are. Every experience in your life shapes you into the unique person that you are, so your true competition can only be with yourself, helping you learn from your mistakes to make yourself a better person.
So be proud of that lopsided cake, that funky painting, because confidence is 10% work and 90% delusion.
Article by DIYA MURALISHANKAR
May 31, 2020
May 31, 2020
May 31, 2020