About Stumbling Toward Artistry

About Stumbling Toward Artistry

“Every artist was first an amateur.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

This blog is a personal pursuit of artistry where I scribe the heartbreak and hilarity of life. It’s a second act, which means more than just getting my act together. It’s about finding meaning in the mundane and joy in all the junk so purpose can present itself. When it does, I can work hard and persevere, yet I can still make a mess of everything! So, should I create chaos, I’ll paint a silver lining and redecorate any dumb decisions. Because my missteps mean I’m human, a work in progress, and possibly a masterpiece in the making! And this reveals the reason to keep stumbling in the first place.

Author’s Statement – An Elevator Pitch from a Gal Who Would Rather Take the Stairs:

I believe there is an amateur and an artist living in us all. It’s evident every day when we face a blank canvas. That’s when we have the opportunity to make the best of things, make things beautiful, or make a big, fat mess! It’s our actions that determine who becomes a piece of art and who remains a piece of work.

As I’m swiftly moving through my fifth decade, I’ve acquired enough wisdom to know the difference between art and awful! Therefore, I’ll continue to stumble over doing things right while mostly doing them over. In the process, I’ll look at life through a lens of levity because shit happens! But so does the awe-inspiring stuff. And with a sense of humor, I can bear bumbling through the bitter and get to savoring the sweet. 


I admire writers and photographers with equal reverence. I dedicate this blog to the spirit of two trailblazers who broke through age and gender barriers. To learn more about these heroines, Erma Bombeck and Dorthea Lange, read on…

In elementary school, I thought reading the newspaper would make me more intelligent than what a current report card revealed about my aptitude. After all, my dad read the paper and was the smartest man in the neighborhood! He could do everything from fixing complicated tax returns to completing tasks involving tools. But other than these activities, I had no idea what my dad did while I was at school, and he went to work.

One morning, I stumbled upon an article penned by the late Erma Bombeck. With its intriguing title, Daddy Doll Under the Bed, Bombeck used humor to describe a child’s perception of a father’s role. She also delivered an indelible doozy with her confusion about mourning a man who did nothing, other than everything of importance! That article beautifully exemplified how words can be mightier than any Samurai sword can ever hope to be! My adolescent eyes reread that article to elicit the emotional response I was experiencing for the first time through the written word. I’ve never forgotten it, nor the moment I realized a woman could write articles like that for the newspaper. “Humorist” was not a word in my childhood vocabulary.

Erma’s audience was the original “real” Housewives of America. She could scribe something about an ironing board with such spectacular satire that the article would make it into every magazine across America. She was that good! Her syndicated column launched when she was nearly into her fourth decade, and it ran for 30 years. Her talent remains unmatched and is utterly iconic. To Erma Bombeck, who left us too soon, you remain my hero of humor and perfection of prose.

Another equal to Erma in the field of forging new paths is the late documentary photographer Dorthea Lange. She said, “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” Thank you, Dorthea, for opening my eyes. While most women of your era were in the kitchen, you documented the faces of Americans stumbling through the Depression. Life through your lens produced an authentic display of the human condition, and your photographs prove that human perseverance can and will prevail.

Disclaimer/Important Things to Know: The stuff scribed on this blog is not written with the assistance of AI or an English tutor. However, I may reconsider the English tutor. Especially if they come from the country of England itself. That way, I can hear their criticism spoken with a hoity-toity accent while I pretend not to give a crumpet. For now, all ramblings, misspellings, and poor grammar come from my own intellect. Most of the photos are from my Canon 80D. Others are stolen straight from the world wide web because they’re far superior to anything I’ll ever photograph. I will give credit where credit is due because all artists should receive the kudos they deserve.

Keep Stumbling!

~ SKM (AKA Jesús)