I saw my first glimpse of real craftsmanship when I was a kid. My Dad took me to an elderly care facility. Full honesty, I didn't want to go. It was depressing, smelled bad, I wasn't into visiting old people.
Until I saw this one hallway - covered in hand drawn portraits.
That someone could be so "old" in my mind, but so full of this incredible talent... it transformed the place for me. And I saw how it impacted the residents too.
I think that's when I really started to respect craftsmanship, and the elderly.
The portraits looked so real, I couldn't stop staring. I'd never seen anything like it.
The man who drew them was super old, but I wanted to be like him one day.
Before meeting this man, the only grown ups I knew rushed around and did confusing things, they didn't "play" as often as I thought they should.
But seeing someone so advanced in age, producing something so beautiful, it made old age seem fun.
Suddenly, there was this bridge between me and a generation I previously avoided. It made something that once felt so far from me, feel closer to me. I wanted to see more of it and I wanted to have a try at it in return - a wordless conversation with art as the language.
I saw it's power firsthand, take me and the other viewers in that aged-care hallway, out of our circumstantial prisons and into a world of pure awe, appreciation and possibility.
If age is inevitable - if I absolutely have to get old - I want to get old mastering a skill like that.