What began as a hobby, has become a full-time obsession. I refuse to refer to drawing as a “job”, that would defeat the original purpose of what I do.
It started as a search for some part-time way of augmenting Social Security. I needed enough additional income to keep the wolves away and facilitate my being able to focus exclusively on art; the fulfillment of a life-long dream.
For the past three years, I have been making the transition from my previous life as a mental health counselor to that of a semi-retired caricature artist. It has been one heck of a trip, but well worth the time and effort.
I feel very comfortable saying to one and all that I have now made it to where I had always wished and hoped I could someday be. My list of art clients number in the many hundreds and include orders from not only nearly every State in the Union, but also from a dozen foreign countries as well. I have divested myself of the stressful routine of being a full-time counselor, working at a busy community-based mental health facility. There are no more staff meetings, schedules or mountains of paperwork to deal with. I now spend my days at home in my studio, listening to vintage rock’n roll music and creating caricatures from photos people send me.
I’m not getting rich, but I am comfortable and, more importantly, much more at ease with myself and the world. I have succeeded in making retirement a truly “golden” experience that has rejuvenated my spirit and replenished my hope for the future.
I strongly encourage anyone who is contemplating what to do with themselves in their later years, those who do not necessarily see themselves fishing or playing golf until they’re planted, to consider a similar course. Turn your hobby or latent passion into the means to a happier, more productive retirement.
For me, it was art and caricature drawing. Whatever it is you’ve always wished you could do, remember: If not now, when?