Policing the agony of art

My business is failing. It is not failing through lack of customers, nor through the quality of the product. It’s failing because my health prevents me from getting out there and bringing in the money.

For the last four years I have persevered forcing myself out there. The last six months has necessitated a change of direction. This is not the first time I have had a sudden and dramatic change, but each comes with the same level of necessity and confidence. Let me explain.

In 1997 I was running my own business. In fact I was running three businesses, working all hours of day, seven days a week. At the time I had two young children, a mortgage and a wife who didn’t understand the need to reign in the spending. Something had to give.

I had a history working for the Police, having taken an admin job there on leaving school. I was still working there when I got my businesses off the ground. I sent in my application to sign up as an officer, knowing that it was only a matter of time before I would be accepted.

How did I know I would get the job? Arrogance? Extreme confidence? No quite the opposite. Depression and anxiety have played a big part in my history. I did the research and knew what was involved. There were seven steps, each being a hurdle to overcome. It’s something we have all heard before. I can’t run a marathon but I can take a step. If I take another step, then another, I will eventually complete the marathon.

Can I become a Police officer? No. Can I pass step one? Yes. In fact each individual step was manageable. The end result was that I passed each step and became a Police officer. Fifteen years later health ended my Police career and I returned to one of my previous businesses. It can’t continue.

Today I have lost more work as I can’t physically get out the door to do it. I have decided to become an artist. Can I produce fantastic works of art? No. What I can do is improve, and with each improvement I get one step closer to my goal. A realistic goal is key. Whilst the Sistine Chapel may be ready for a lick of paint, I am not quite there yet.

Where I am is in a place where friends are happy to let me paint their pets.

MillieClint Eastwood

Later today I will be painting a friends pet. By Christmas I will be taking commissions. One step at a time.



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