Developing Talent

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“Artistic talent is a gift from God and whoever discovers it in himself has a certain obligation: to know that he cannot waste this talent, but must develop it.”  ~ Arthur Schoenhauer boy playing pianoSunday was such a joyful day for the family of a ten year old boy from Newport News, Virginia. He’s been visiting his grandparents in Steamboat, and found an opportunity that he didn’t expect when he arrived here – two chances to play the piano in front of an audience of a fully-packed church.

The boy is years beyond his peers in his musical abilities. To say he is “gifted” doesn’t quite cover it. Our first chance as a community to hear this youngster play the piano was Sunday, a week ago. He skillfully played “Let it Go,” from the soundtrack of Disney’s movie “Frozen.” It’s one of my current favorites.

Two days ago he returned to surprise his parents by playing Pachelbel’s – Canon on the pipe organ. While the student has been visiting,  the United Methodist Church in Steamboat has been letting this talented young artist practice on their piano in the sanctuary. His parents were not aware that he also has been allowed to try his hands, for the first time, on a pipe organ.

I got a little teary-eyed as I listened to the boy play the pipe organ so magnificently and skillfully for his young age. I couldn’t  help but think about all the young children who have undiscovered talents or not the right opportunities to develop them. In general, communities of caring people need to do better at helping children nurture their innate abilities. Whether a child’s talents lie in the Arts, Science, Communications or any other field that really holds their passions and interests,  having strong mentors is important.

The most beautiful part of this story – This child already understands the gifts that he has been given and where they have come from. Best to you always, Mason! You really impressed us.

This blog brought to you the author of Gift of a Lifetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, Sue Batton Leonard. Now Available in Audio: Click here for info. and also available in paperback and e-book!

Vision, Art, Science Leads to New Technologies

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“The essential part of creativity is not being afraid to fail.” ~ Edwin H Land 

creativity-and-innovation-concept-related-words-in-tag-cloud-on-whiteThe rise of independently published books, film and music has made great strides, thanks to the development of technology. Tools of the trade that were only available to major publishing houses, movie studios and music/sound production companies, now can be mastered by anyone with the right education, artistic talent and a “head” for all things technology. 

Quality, desk top published books for print and electronic formats, visual effects in movies and synthetically produced audio sound, are all now made possible through computer technology. In the 2010 summer issue of Movie Maker Magazine, there is an article about the creation of stunning special effects for a multi-award winning movie, in a college dorm room, on a mediocre computer. http://bit.ly/VY8nbP

Steps to becoming a successful innovator of any kind, takes hard work, all-encompassing focus and drive, entrepreneurial spirit and gumption.  It is not for a person who is not highly self-motivated. 

But then, isn’t that how our forefathers made this country what it is today? Hard work, not handouts, ambition and vision drove pioneers in all kinds of industry – building railroads, the industrial revolution, mining, manufacturing, agriculture and much more.  

Children, through the use of technology, will become  innovators of the future. They’ll be the next generation to revolutionize library content, health care solutions, military capabilities and new creative ways of teaching.

Playaways are just one such example of  new technology that has been developed to distribute media. Does your library have the latest?  http://www.playaway.com/

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What is Your Currency?

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Live out your imagination, not your history.” ~ Stephen Covey 

Creative economy has been the buzzword here in Colorado and in pockets all over the United States. It is about making a living artfully through our passions and living with purpose in all that we do. 

More and more, people are realizing that there is great personal value in fulfilling our lives with what we love to do, rather than just existing to make the almighty buck. Individuals are beginning to realize that the vicious circle of working lots of hours just to have, to spend, to accumulate and keep up with the Joneses does not necessarily make sense. It is not a sustainable way to live. It is hard to enjoy and live healthy lifestyles when we are stuck on the treadmill of working more hours just to be able spend more. 

Relationships, community, volunteerism, thinking beyond our selves and our material needs are beginning to take priority in people’s lives, as this slow economy has forced us to see that there are other ways of being. And that is not a bad thing! I love hearing stories of people who are successfully recreating themselves and their businesses in these times of economic hardships. 

There was a story this week in the Steamboat Today newspaper about an artist who decided to act upon his longstanding interest in the fabric arts. Now, he is winning international acclaim for his creativity and artistic talent in making quilts. To read his story, please visit http://bit.ly/l58Ad0. For those who are unable to travel to see David Taylor’s quilts, I hope some day he will independently publish a book and sell it on the world-wide-web, with images of his fabric creations and his thoughts about using his creative talents for personal fulfillment. 

Do you have creative currency that has been dormant? Believe in yourself and dare to expend energy on making a new life for yourself through your passions. Write it, publish it, sew it, knit it, cook it, paint it, mold it, build and grow it – what ever IT is!

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Sugar Plums in May? What is Up with that?

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Keep steadily before you the fact that all true success depends at last upon yourself.”  ~Theodore T Hunger 

Ahh…youth….creativity….promise….energy! I love it. 

The other day I met with a young, emerging artist who wanted some guidance and coaching on this thing called “e-marketing.” Many would say he has already emerged as a talent. But, he is headed in a different direction now. Our meeting was a time to explore ideas, possibilities, objectives and different approaches for marketing his art. His goal is to become more visible and take his photography to a new level. 

We began with a little basic education. As we got further into the conversation and tossed around some ideas, he began to squirm in his chair. His movements became more animated and I could tell he had visions of “sugarplums dancing in his head!” At one point in the conversation, he grabbed his face and said “ There’s a lot to think about!” 

This young emerging artist will not fall by the wayside as wasted talent, I am quite sure of that.  He has deep passion for his art. He also knows much already about setting his sites and going for the gold!

In his teenage years, he became notable in ski magazines for his freestyle tricks and had a successful competitive career. He will parlay his knowledge of what it takes to be a stand out, into his art of photography. 

He knows  that becoming successful in any new field takes:

  • Persistence
  • Energy
  • Setting goals and reaching for them http://bit.ly/bXRnOb.
  • Coaching
  • Vision and dreams 

There is great promise in this young man’s artistic talent. He is smart, he is creative! He is seeking out the tools he needs to market himself and his art through the internet. He is going at this with heads UP!  We look forward to sharing more information on this emerging  artist. But first, this young man understands he has some work to do. Stay tuned, I think he is a star in the making!

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