What drives us to become artists?

Why does someone decide to be in the arts?

Have you ever wondered? It surely isn’t an easy path. Either you chose to become a writer, painter, musician, actor etc. you will face countless issues and difficulties with little reward and guarantee. So why would one choose to do this from all the other things in the world?

I can’t speak for all so I will speak for myself. And hope others will relate. My guess is some people are just simply wired that way. Maybe it is some sort of a code in the brain that has gone wrong or right ( that is for you to decide).

The early days:

It all began for me at an early age. I loved stories and I used to imagine an alternative reality  as a child and sometimes strongly believe it to be true. I was  impressed by nature  and sound more than people. Oh, I loved the sound of birds, of wind, rain, river, trees, animals and instruments. At home, I was surrounded by the sound of the piano from the time I was born. I guess that was it. I still remember I thought that the piano is magical. Nobody else apart from the piano and my cat understood me.

I think around the age of 6 ( maybe 7) I had this fabulous idea to take my cat and piano and move to the woods and live there. I think it is safe to say there were some issues with this genius plan. The fact that the piano was too heavy really was the main reason.

During my time at school, I also did not find a place or feel very relatable to most of my peers. I still loved the stories of history and art and music. The lives of composers fascinated me. The theater and the opera, those where the things that somehow in my heart made me feel a sense of belonging.


Today I am not a child. In fact, I am a mature student studying piano performance at a Conservatoire of Music. This involves countless hours of practice. Little or no security in finance and being exhausted full stop. It also comes with the added benefit of  always feeling not good enough, fierce competition, isolation and someone telling you how you are not doing enough. The issue about being too old to study piano and more.

So the assumption to make is my parents forced me into this or I have just lost my mind, clearly. No sane person would do this.

Well, it is a surprise for me too.  I did other things I spent years of trying to do the right thing. To have a normal profession and be happy about this. Honestly and this is just me I felt that life was passing by me and I was simply an observer. I had lost all the meaning of who I was. I stopped reading, listening to music and enjoying arts. I simply existed.

The realization:

There came a day I felt so suffocated by life. I couldn’t understand what was the point of it? I always knew we had this one amazing chance of being in this world, I just felt that I am wasting mine. I tried explaining this to people. Everyone looked at me like I was mad. I had to acknowledge others didn’t feel the same way. And I also had to acknowledge that this is not the way for me. So here I was in my late 20s realizing what I knew from the beginning. Music was my life and I had to get it back. I understood more than ever the risks and downsides of this decision but I have never been that happy.

ieva dubova