I was reborn in 2005 as an artist. I’d had another, interesting earlier life. But for years this second career, if that’s the word, stirred my dreams.

Artists don’t so much choose art; it chooses us. Call it what you will: passion, infection, urgent message bottled in the DNA.

Painting is a joy, a struggle, a form of (secular) prayer and a celebration of the natural world and the imagination. To me, the best art achieves a shifting balance between the two, an ambiguous blend of representation and abstraction, of what you see and how you see it.

Art makes sense in a way that no other human activity does. Actually, it can make sense of human activity.

This is all easily enough said, so let me add: Ideas change as we change and learn, adapting ourselves to the world and our own evolution.

Most of my adult life I was immersed in the arts – but as commentator, writer, critic and editor, not as a practicing artist. I spent 35 years at newspapers, most of them at the Boston Globe, as film reviewer, arts writer and columnist, interviewer (frequently of national and regional artists), and Arts Editor. As a young person and throughout my journalism career, I nursed, and suppressed, a sharp nagging urge to make art. Over the years, I doodled, and took two or three elementary drawing courses, scarcely slaking the impulse.

When I retired from journalism, I was, as I say, reborn.