I grew up attending Catholic schools. One of the subjects at my Catholic High School was called Christian Living. It's pretty much was as it says on the tin.
We did a little bit of Bible work, but mostly we talked about - or were lectured about - living the life of a good Christian soul. I’d relay what that might be but I wasn’t listening; mostly I drew in my Christian Living book - the beginning of a lifetime of doodling with intent.
I took notes and drew curly-cues, wrote quotes in large bubble lettering, traced around my hand and wrote Simon and Garfunkel lyrics around its shape on the paper.
More than anything, I traced comics in my Christian Living book. Cartoons and comics I found funny from magazines. I looked studious but as I mentioned, I wasn't even listening half the time. I filled book after book, taping them all together until I had this thick wodge of pages full of these drawings and tracings and lyrics and hardly a word about living like a Christian.
I may have been accused of wasting my time in that class had the teacher not been so beguiled by my doubling ways. I never thought much of what I was doing besides staving off boredom from information I didn't think was relevant or true; I certainly never thought that attending Christian Living class was going to land me a job, let alone my dream job - but it did. It was pretty much the only reason I got my draughting apprenticeship.
Oh I got the initial job of Draughting Office Clerk for all the other things I had learned at school like typing, and English, and all that jazz; had I not spent all those hours tracing comics and being confident with making marks would I have accumulated all the skills I needed to impress the draughtsmen when I was called upon to update plans.
My handwriting was pretty uniform after all those hours of copying fonts from the Speedball catalogue to spice up my Christian Living page headings; my eye for tracing through fairly think school exercise book paper meant using draughting canson paper was such a treat in comparison; my ability to use ink without smudging or blotting was honed from watching felt tipped pens dry while my teacher droned on about doing unto others as we would have them do unto us blah blah blah.
I remember being told when they offered me the apprenticeship that when they showed the head draughtsman my example plan and that of the other applicant who had 2 years actual draughting experience over mine, he had incorrectly guessed who had drawn which plan thinking mine was the one with the experienced hand - and therefore I got the job.
Time is never wasted when you’re doing what you love to do.