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A Year of Yes: Show your work – a lesson from Matisse

Pentimento is Italian for “repent” though its colloquial meaning in the art world is a bit closer to “show your work”. If you look at a number of Matisse’s drawings, you can see that he left his erasure marks so that we can see where and when he changed his mind and how often it took him multiple tries to get his work exactly the way he wanted it to be.

When I look at the path of my life, I see many pentimentos, places and traces of changing my mind, trying something new, exploring, and traveling in a new direction. Like Matisse’s sketches, you’ll see the marks if you look closely enough. And that’s okay with me. I don’t erase the mistakes of my life; I just re-arrange them. I put them in perspective. I try very hard to learn from them and be a better version of myself as a result of having lived through them.

I hope that as we begin a new year after what was a very difficult one, we’ll find a way to take a page from Matisse’s book. Let’s make use of our collective pentimentos so that we can craft a much better future together.

About Christa Avampato

I make a living in business and I make a life as a writer, artist, and yogi. I use my business and storytelling skills to build a better world. My first novel, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, will be published in the Fall of 2017 by Thumbkin Prints, a children's and YA imprint of Possibilities Publishing Co. My creative career has stretched across Capitol Hill, Broadway theatre, education, nonprofit fundraising, health and wellness, and Fortune 500 companies in retail, media, and financial services. In every experience, I have used my sense of and respect for elegant design to develop meaningful products, services, program, and events to help people live happier, healthier lives. A recovering multi-tasker, I am a proud alum of UPenn (BA) and the Darden School at UVA (MBA). When not in front of my Mac, I’m on my yoga mat, walking my rescue dog, Phineas, traveling with a purpose, or practicing the high-art of people watching. I am proud to New York City my home, and I've been called the happiest New Yorker by friends and strangers alike. They're right. Follow my adventures on Twitter at https://twitter.com/christanyc and Instagram at https://instagram.com/christarosenyc.

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