I stray I, sorry for not commenting in your sketchbook earlier. You've got some really nice stuff in here and whatever you do just keep pushing forward and think positive as well as confident! I really love the plein air painting it just comes to show what you can do with practice, hard work and effort, with time you'll be able to do much more!
I know I am only seventeen and have not experienced as much as you guys have but I would also like to throw in my two cents since I as well feel like I am in the same boat even though things may sound more immature and stuff. When I started high school, I was in a dark place. A lot of personal stuff happened to me and all I was doing was brooding and dwelling on such a thing, I had also felt pressured by the need to satisfy other people's expectations and had to follow paths I did not want to cross. I was completely lost. During my 10th year art class I was practically the worst in class since I only started to draw the year before and before that I was just doodling A LOT, other students used to insult my artwork behind my back but I still continued either way not because of what everyone else though but because I liked to draw and nothing else later in the year I somehow managed to exceed a lot of my peers in skill perhaps because I was drawing more frequently than them and it did not occur to them that drawing was about pencil mileage and hard work(although I was drawing more frequently than my peers I still was not really drawing THAT much and it was mostly from imagination so I did not improve as much as I would have liked because back then I was not thinking about improving and it was more of a means to express myself.). The next year, I had a breakdown and was not doing as well in high school so I had to move and my new high school did not have an arts program whatsoever and during that time I was being pressured to pursue an average career, you know get good grades go to a decent university and get myself a good job that pays well, during that year I totally stagnated although I was always drawing on my notebooks and stuff, I also noticed I could not even draw the human figure too well(Infact most of my knowledge of art that time came from my highschool teacher and stuff I figured out myself) so I looked up online on good books for drawing figures and found Loomis's figure drawing book and during that time I was not too aware about the need to draw from life to improve so I was just randomly copying some of Loomis's drawings from time to time and trying to figure it out through imaginative drawings. During my Senior year(The present year which I just yesterday graduated from! ), I realized that I can't just keep being pressured by expectations or any external obstacles and that the only way that I am truly happy is when I draw and create. It was during this time I seriously looked into Sheridan's program requirements and decided to pursue a profession in arts and it was also the year I discovered concept art(oh the joy!), I was looking through MindCandyMan's sketchbook as well as many other sketchbook's with inspiring amounts of improvements and it was then I realized that if I really put in the hours and work really hard I could make a living out of this and it made me extremely happy so I kept chugging away working for hours and hours and without realizing it I've made strides(I guess?) in my improvement as an artist, when I applied to Sheridan, I disappointingly did not get in and they did not even bother to send me my score sheet but after this experience I've learned the very important lesson of hard work and that if you stay positive, you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it just be stubborn! So here I am at the beginning of my journey xD, moving to Canada with little money to my name and plan to continue chugging away at it and re-apply to Sheridan again, Oh the joy and drama of pursuing an arts career xD.
Anyway What I really wanted to conclude and say in the end is that right now you are doing what you love and the reason why you would try to get paid for what you do is to continue doing more of it. So enjoy the times you are drawing now and just try to take it into a positive light, in art you are drawing now enjoying yourself and perhaps down along the road you could land a career in it so you could end up doing more of it . There really is no end to the journey and it is the journey you are suppose to be enjoying and it is never really about trying to reach the end of it since lets say you are going to be pro you still are going to keep studying, still be doing lifedrawing, still be learning the fundamentals, and still going to improve!