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Introductory Essay

About one year ago I had a life changing experience, a trip to a little town called

Kerry on the outskirts of Dublin, Ireland. It was the most beautiful place that I have ever

seen. Being in the presence of such beauty helped me see life from a different

perspective. I was just going to be happy, appreciate what I have, be open-minded, not

take anything for granted, and love everyone and everything. When I came back from

Ireland I was truly happy, nothing could make me upset. But after awhile my constant

elation came to a gradual end, but I was soon to find that even though my elation ended I

was going to be a happy, loving, and open-minded person forever. And there was

everyday influences like film, art, and music to remind me of that, my trip, and the

happiness that came with it.

Film helps me to remember not to take little things for granted. A good example

of this is in the movie ?Good Will Hunting?. The main character, Will Hunting (Matt

Damon), is a troubled young man living the poor life in south Boston. He had a real

genius for mathematics, but due to his hard personality and a long line of dysfunctional

foster homes he didn?t take advantage of this talent. Then with the help from a MIT

professor and a psychology teacher (Robin Williams) Will is able to open up and realize

what he had. This movie just seemed so real and it reminded me how lucky I am, I have

a good family great friends which should never be taken for granted. Which reminds me

of freedom, a privilege seriously taken for granted in todays society. I think many people

will probably never realize how lucky they are to have freedom unless the are fighting for

it or simply don?t have it. This appreciation for freedom is shown best in the movies

?Brave Heart? and ?Michael Collins?. The main characters, William Wallace (Brave

Heart) and Michael Collins (Michael Collins), were both living under suppressive British

rule, fought, and died for the right to be free. Someone doesn?t die for

something they don?t appreciate. When I think about those movies I am really happy,

because I am lucky, free, and free to seize any opportunity that comes my way.

Art also reminds me of my happiness, a single piece of art work can capture a

moment of emotion or feeling. Artists like Claude Monet really capture emotion well,

in the painting, ?The Stroll: Camille Monet?, Monet painted Camille standing in the

middle of a field, it sounds simple. But Monet did such a good job that there seems to be

more, there is emotion. That is what makes art special, emotion, and that I can have my

own thoughts about what the artist is trying to say through their painting. In the Edward

Hopper painting, ?Route 6? there is a real warm feeling coming from it. That warm

feeling is one of the best emotions that I have experienced, the only other time I get that

feeling is when nature is at it?s best (sunsets, sunrises, grassy fields, ect.). That brings me

to the artist Liz Sexton, her paintings of nature are some of the most beautiful, natural,

and unique pieces of art that I have ever seen. I think that I am on of the luckiest people

in the world to be able to appreciate this artistic beauty, that in its self makes me a happy


The most important influence in my life would have to be music. When I listen to

music like acustic Led Zeppelin, I am just really happy. When I was in Ireland and I first

realized how lucky I was, I was listening to Zeppelin?s, ?Going to California?. Ever

since then all I listen to is acustic music, it just makes me the happiest. Other acustic

artist?s like Elliott Smith play beautiful music, Smith?s songs ?Kiwi Maddog 20/20? and

?No Name #3? remind me of going the beach with my friends. That also makes me

really happy (being with my friends), as does the musician Nick Drake. Personally I

think Nick Drake is the best acustic musician of all times, his album ?Pink Moon?

is beautifuland it reminds me of being with my friends. Music (especially acustic) gives

me that happy feeling and lets me realize the special things in my life like beauty in

nature and friends.

All in all, my trip to Ireland brought me to the realization that life is a valuable

thing. Since that trip I have totally changed, I appreciate all I have, I?m happy, open

minded, and loving towards all life. And film, art, and music just are a constant reminder


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