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The other night we had an opening here at the Artist Lofts I moved into. It is a very interesting place to live. Every month a new artist hosts a theme for a show.

The other night we had an opening here at the Artist Lofts I moved into. It is a very interesting place to live. Every month a new artist hosts a theme for a show.

The artist who put the show together is asking people to contribute by writing, posting on YouTube or twitter what risks have you taken in your life. She is going to be including videos and hash-tags and having a showing here on June 1st for everyone who participated. Included is also visual work that interprets risk-taking.

At the opening, she asked me to submit some Postcards from my project to her show and she also asked if she could film me by asking questions and posting them about taking risks. Of course, I automatically froze because I prefer to be behind the camera rather than in front. I was gently reminded by her that this in and of itself is me taking a risk. Of course, I agreed.

As the camera came on me and the question asked was "are there any risks you wish you would have taken but didn't?" In an instant a film went through my head of my life and to my own amazement was NO!

My answer was more of, there were risks I wish I didn't take but did"and we laughed. My answer for the camera wasn't really as interesting as the discoveries I had about myself. I take risks and I take big risks all the time. Sometimes it takes me a while to get there but in the end, I always jump in.

Here is just a few... I went to Europe for the Summer instead of Graduate School which would have guaranteed me a safe job teaching photography. Left journalism to start doing Fine Art Photography. Left some good men who treated me wonderfully because something was missing and I wasn't 100 percent invested and we both deserved better. Opened up a photography gallery in Hollywood without having a business background. Inquired about expanding my fine artwork photographing handicapped children and animals which led to a seven-year job photographing dolphins doing therapy with handicapped children (one of the best experiences in my life).

I got married to someone I didn't really know. Bought a house on my own. Got a divorce without an attorney, sold the house through a short sale without an attorney. I left my job without having another one. I made a conscious decision to be alone for a while so I could really know myself.

Decided I wanted to drive across the country from S. Florida to California and stay for five months without having means to a steady income because I wanted and needed to. Started Postcards to the Universe a very large project that I have faith will grow the way I desire it to.

Found these artist lofts made the decision I had to live here and did it. Constantly expanding my circle of friends to include so many variables of people with different interests that sometimes my head spins. I wrote and published one

E-book on photography and am just finishing the other with plans for two more. Starting to give workshops, and have been interviewed on internet radio with plans for more.

This is just a handful of the risks I have taken and all of this came to me in a flash when that question was posed. I realized that I am quite brave, much braver than I thought. I also realized that when I took each of these risks every time I was scared and sometimes terrified, but I did it anyway. And although some of the risks I took caused loss and pain I have no regrets of, wish I would have done that. I am quite proud of myself. I really am a brave girl!...

xoxo ~ Melisa

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