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Ten Thousand Hours

People often ask me when did I begin painting.  They ask, “Did you paint before your husband died?”  I tell them, “I have always created art. I drew; I painted as a small child.” Have you ever read Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers?  In that book, he makes the case that 10,000 hours of practice are needed for mastery in many art forms and skills.  He mentions the success of Bill Gates has deep roots in early access to computer technology.  He references the 1,200 live performances the Beetles gave in Germany prior to their fame. He makes the point that mastery requires practice and opportunity to hone skills.  Since the Outliers book was published some detractors have commented that really 25,000 hours are needed.  Or they say that luck and nimble thinking is far more important than years of practice. I think we need both.  I think we must devote hour…