In 1996-2000 there were TV series shown - "The Pretender" - about the man genius who could be anyone he wanted, i.e. he could "flawlessly impersonate anyone in virtually any line of work".
What is the ability of a genius, is also an ability of every man but to different extent. At least I believe in this. So it wasn't just a charismatic look of the Pretender (Michael T. Weiss) that would grip you watching the series, but the idea of this human potential of becoming anyone he wanted in professional level and in the same life time.
Anyone who has changed his occupation, profession or interest field in life at least once do have this feeling of being a "pretender" and have motioned the human potential of being anyone desired. The extent of it depends individually, of course.
I have had this strong feeling of being a "pretender" several times in my life. Being a dancer from my early childhood years led me to dream only about a career of a dancer and seek perfectionism in it, though in my late teenage year I found passion for photography that I think was in the family as my father has been an amateur self taught photographer having his own old photo making equipment, chemicals, films, shiny papers, dark room...that all built into some magical sense for me as being a child. I didn't go into deep at photography at that time and I have even lost my black and white films and photos of that time.
My biggest transformation was leaving a career of a dancer for study of psychology - I took my BA and MA degree in it and I can say I was passionate about it and yes, I was good at it. I knew I could do a lot in this field. If I wanted to... And that's where I had my first doubts. I sacrificed my biggest passion - dance for psychology (and always had a feeling of being a bird with cut wings since then) and suddenly found myself in doubt if it really was the field I want to devote myself to... This was the point in life where I started my dance therapy groups and my new passionate study on merging dance, art, expression and psychology.
My second biggest transformation was finding textiles - felt and becoming - an artist? self taught. artistic soul? I haven't actually found the right word for myself till now.
I knew so little about textile before and suddenly I was so into it spending days and nights studying and practicing it on my own, experimenting, trying to feel it.
I do feel I am doing the right thing at the right time of my life now. I enjoy discovering the textile world and feel it is so strongly connected with discovering world itself, nature and life. And being a therapy for one's soul as I once said...
What actually made me think of the human potential for "pretending" (which is actually not the direct meaning of pretending to be someone you are not, but in the meaning used in the series - really becoming someone else) was my renewed interest in photography. I must say I don't know any technical rules, even any basics of it, I usually shoot driven by feelings, by something one can only sense without any scientific explanations. And suddenly I wanted to know it all, not just experiment with setting different numbers on my camera, but know what those numbers mean and what exactly I am doing.
I spent a couple of evenings trying to make several self portraits and just got a feeling that I would need another lifetime for discovering what photography really was... Or just felt too tired yet for another potential of being a pretender again in my life.
And there are so many other things I still want to learn and keep on discovering... that it really blows my mind how other humans manage to learn and keep all the information, and skills they develop in so many fields in the same life time... And where do they get all the time in the world for doing that?
We are learning all our life and after. Learning on its' global perspective is living... But I would need hundreds of life times for learning everything I want now... Yet it doesn't prevent me from enjoying those few things that I've learned in life and keep on doing. And it leads to belief that every minute left of this life time would be full of joy of discovery.
And yet I do get confused when someone asks me now - who are you?..
A "pretender", I guess.