Effort. A big little word.


Effort in art by Gary Whitley.
How it feels with some projects.

“Effort is a commitment to seeing a task through to the end, not just until you get tired of it.”

—Author unknown

Effort only fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit.”

—Napoleon Hill

“Put the uncommon effort into the common task… make it large by doing it in a great way.”

—Orison Swett Marden

I am fortunate to get paid for doing what I love. I learn something new on every piece of art I do. Sometimes it’s a joyful task, other times it’s a difficult grind. But I keep on learning.

I have to chuckle when people come to me and say “just do me a quick little drawing or painting. It won’t take you very long because you are so good.” I’m good at it because I have put in the effort most of my life to get there. The decades of continuous learning and sketching and painting may make it seem easy to most people but it hasn’t been. The words of my old friend Mike say it best:

“If people knew how hard I worked to achieve my mastery, it wouldn’t seem so wonderful after all.”


Mike was always a sourpuss, maybe partly because he hated his full name—Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni. He was a bit of a recluse, usually forgot to eat, and often slept in his clothes and boots, but I think he did pretty well for himself.


Effort becomes success.

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