Last week we introduced you to Jorge, an artist and activist making a difference in downtown Parkersburg. In addition to his work as an artist, Jorge also kickstarted a local, soon-to-be-international campaign: the #IMLIVING movement. We asked Jorge to tell us about how this movement began, what it’s all about, and his goals moving forward. In his words:
At a committee meeting one evening, an older member of the committee asked me: Jorge, why are you always happy? What is it that makes you so happy? I answered the man by telling him: “I’m Living!!” Looking at me, he asked: What do you mean? I replied, “I finally feel that I have found my purpose in life and because of that I’m living a more fulfilled and passionate life and through that I am able to change lives.”
That night I went home and I started thinking to myself; I have a job, food, clothes, friends, family, a bed to sleep on and these are the things that truly matter in life, #IMLIVING!! I realized how far I had come because of people in my life; people who saw the good in me and who made a choice to invest, to develop, and to believe in me in the process. I could not stop thinking about it and I knew then that #IMLIVING had the potential of becoming something great. I was overwhelmed with passion and I believed 100% that I had what it took to make a difference; it was up to me to embrace it or to let it go. I decided to embrace it and I started to think on how I could incorporate that small sentence into everyday life. Over time, I started to incorporate it in my art and in the “now” moments of my everyday life. When I found myself conversing with a friend, painting, eating good food, enjoying a good cup of coffee, in my travels, or when I would find an opportunity to serve a fellow human being I would tweet #IMLIVING. I wanted to put a positive thought in peoples’ minds allowing them to know what I valued; “nothing like enjoying a cup of coffee with a good friend #IMLIVING” , “nothing like family #IMLIVING”, etc.
Allowing others to find themselves makes me happy. Watching people do good and share what they have gives me a high that I can’t explain.
Finally, one day I decided to turn it into something bigger.
One of my biggest desires in life has been to be able to make a way for others. Allowing others to find themselves makes me happy. Watching people do good and share what they have gives me a high that I can’t even explain. I’ve been given many opportunities in my life and because of that I have always been an advocate for those who can’t speak for themselves. I felt God in all of this and I knew that everything I had become up to this point was because of Him. I knew that He had promised to be with me, and it was enough to know that He would be with me along the way. I understood that He created me for his Glory and that the only possible way to honor Him with my life was by maximizing the gift inside me so that in the end He can be glorified. I was filled with passion, vision, and was determined to do it.
#IMLIVING has now become the brand and the hub of all that I do. #IMLIVING has three branches; The Art Exhibitions, The Store, and The Foundation. I have been doing Art Exhibitions and have every intention to host many more. I usually create, design and paint modern abstract art. My goal is to take art and transform it into accessories, skateboards, snowboards, clothes, etc., (#IMLIVING is legally copyrighted). I want to help build schools, orphanages, and help feed the poor inside the United States and around the world. My desire is to support missionaries and the local church and to provide avenues for people to experience the world by allowing them to serve in fields they are specialized in.
This is the message I desire to convey to each person reading this: “Find the good in you and share it with others. You never know what can happen when you do.”
Perhaps the biggest story about me is that I found myself by giving myself away. This is the message I desire to convey to each person reading this: “find the good in you and share it with others. You never know what can happen when you do… I never woke up in the mornings dreaming that I would be an artist, or that I would found #IMLIVING. It all happened as I met other peoples needs. It’s life… it is more beautiful to give than to receive… it is an inner revolution. Waking up in the mornings now and knowing that I can make a difference gives me the passion, the strength and the courage to do it all over again; its not about me anymore!”
In essence, #IMLVING’s mission is to revitalize self-identity and to allow individuals to understand and enjoy the process of being a work in progress; to enjoy the now moments of life. I am so passionate about #IMLIVING because I finally feel that I have something tangible where I can help people. The best avenue for me to show that I am thankful is by giving back.