This drawing I made yesterday feels disturbing. It’s kind of insect-like, yet has an ‘as above, so below’ feel to it. But the grey half is different to the colourful half. It’s like the colour has sucked itself out to exist for a while as colour and will eventually return. The colour is dancing, going, “I am here!” It is attached to the grey thing, is still part of it, but has, briefly, taken another form. It feels separate but isn’t. I think it’s about being human.
Mr Yates, art teacher at Walton Girls’ High School, 1983
I’ve often wondered why I accepted Mr Yates’ statement as Truth when I was thirteen. I immediately stopped drawing and began a journal instead. I had a flash of insight yesterday whilst washing my hair (of all things): he’d stated I wasn’t good enough at identity level. “You’re not good enough.” It was like a magic spell. I believed him. I stopped.
This drawing began as a mindfulness exercise to soothe me after stretching my comfort zone. I like the feel of the paper and the sound of the pen making dots. As I look at it I realise it’s a reflection of all the things I’ve been thinking about lately – spirituality, resonance, parts therapy, to name a few. More Than The Sum of Our Parts is for sale. If you’re interested in it or any other art I have for sale, email me.
This is my latest pigment pen drawing, Turning Over A New Leaf, which is for sale – email me if you’d like more information. My research into the phrase, “turning over a new leaf,” highlighted the assumption that often accompanies the intention to turn over a new leaf. Here’s a definition from Collins:
Chalk pastels are one of my favourite art materials. I love the way they blend easily. This week I’ve been making drawings to create insights around self knowledge. The parts of my self that I’m focusing on are Small Me and Big Me. You can read more about them in my coaching blog post. Below are my images and the words I wrote about them in my journal. If you’d like to buy any of my images email me.
This postcard is my response to the affect of Covid and Black Lives Matter on me. The collective trauma of Covid-19 sparked memories of personal childhood trauma, which I was able to hold and work through. When the Black Lives Matter movement swelled, I connected with it as a feminist. All of this broke my heart open, making space for a spiritual breakthrough.
When someone asked me, “are you a cat person or a dog person?” I responded: “both!” I love the friendly way dogs often approach as if you’ve come to see them alone. I also love how cats choose to be around you and leave when they’ve had enough. We can learn something from both these behaviours.
I drew the image above after reading an essay by Jacqui Roach and Petal Felix on the black female gaze. In the essay, Jacqui and Petal* analyse the gaze of three black women – a writer, an actor, and a songwriter. They conclude that the black female gaze is not a unified gaze but made up of different points of view. However, they see one of these points of view as lacking.
Is pain part of creativity? It seems to be for me. Often, I begin creating a piece of art because I’m in psychological pain and it can transform that pain into healing. The drawing above began on the anniversary of my father’s suicide. Despair was what I was feeling and, somehow, I was able to tap into that feeling and watch it take shape on paper. By externalising it and writing in my journal about it, I could understand it more. I wrote a blog post about the beginning of this process.