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Art therapy - share your work here

I was used to being silenced and expected to follow what is considered to be the norm without questioning anything.

I felt as if, and was often reminded that, I was continually failing by not doing so.

I lived in constant fear of never living up to the standards set in place by others.

Once I realized how detrimental that path had become to my overall well-being, I finally became okay in expressing myself more creatively, as I saw fit, not as I was expected to do.

It only took several decades to painfully arrive at that space of knowing.

I began making items out of other items that had outlived their original purpose. Much like I felt for myself. I had outlived what I thought was my original purpose of pleasing everyone else. I knew in my heart all that anything and/or anyone needs is a purpose and I was out to find one for us all.

Things like:

Magnets out of old greeting cards and random junk mail mailings and magazines/catalogues
Hide-a-key containers out of old pill bottles
Dry erase boards out of cool old picture frames
Recipe hangers out of old school pants hangers
Patchwork sweater vases out of old wool sweater scraps and old flower vases
Hand warmers out of old wool sweaters that had been shrunk in the dryer
Wool shoe inserts for winter time out of wool sweater scraps
Pocket rocks with inspirational reminders, symbols, words, etc.
Magnetic awareness magnets from old leftover ceramic tiles
Percussive music instruments from old coffee cans, tambourine like things from sticks and wire and flattened beer caps, etc.
etc., etc., etc.

Wrote rhymes of how I was feeling:

Question this, question that,
So used to bracing myself, ready to fall flat.
What's the deal when a sista's trying to heal,
But peeps can't seem to handle what she feels?

Censor this, censor that,
My expressiveness needs to wear a damn hard hat.
Trying not to offend while keeping it real,
Creates an uncomfortable desire to conceal.

Release this, release that,
It's always that last nerve they seem to get at.
Breathe in love, exhale all doubt,
Grow, baby, grow and keep on branching out.

Learned how to make hula hoops and how to use them and that quickly became a favorite daily exercise.

I enjoy being artsy with my plant-based food and beverages, too.

Also in designing our garden spaces and what not.

I play a Native American flute, although I still leak and squeak and don't know any particular songs, I just free style.

I play djembe drums, frame drums, various percussion instruments at drum circles and such, and during meditation times.

I'll dance and sing any time any where.

The possibilities are endless and I'm having a blast discovering each one. Even the ones I suck at are fun for at least a little while. lol

Thanks for the reminder to spend more time in my creative spaces.
Well, I am an artist. I was gonna share some of my art therapy pieces, but since I'm new, I have no...
When you post a comment, right beside the Post Reply button is one to upload a file. I'm looking forward to seeing your work!

Here's a photo of mine:

Mal Content that makes me angry that an art teacher said you have no talent. What does she (or he) know? Art is so subjective. I am an artist and art teacher. I am sure I have indicated to some of my students they could have tried harder, but I try very hard to emphasize to everyone they have talent in some way. Some students might be very good with pattern and some students might be able to put their sense of humor into their work. I think art is often either so exclusive and removed from common access or it is so dumbed down and prescribed. The truth is we are all creators and we can all express ourselves in deep and vibrant ways. I am a narrative based artist and the ability to tell stories with trauma themes is so healing. Remember, we were once all children capable of pretend play, complex symbolism, and story lines that heals through play. We were all natural artists. Art comes in many forms. It might be arranging a scrap book, crafting a meal, singing in church ect. Art does not have to be a work of art. I get it though, it is hard to put any thing out there that is expressive as art represents ourselves. I do not always take my own advice and have been known to destroy sketch books and rip up pieces of my art kind of like a sort of artistic self harm. I have a degree in art so my extreme perfectionism makes it hard and stunts creativity.
<chuckling> I am suddenly reminded of how in elementary music class the "erasers kid" (c'est moi, no musical talent whatsoever) was finally allowed to play the cymbals!!! :sneaky: but only on the condition that I ran up and down the halls banging them as hard as I could shouting Mr.Schuster said I could!!! as loud as possible.

My music teacher was not named Mr.Schuster.

I am still, to this day, uncertain as to the nature / exactly what adult battle I was used as a weapon in. But dayum it was fun! :D
I would want to see it, though I do not know what a pictorial essay is? Yes, art can be good for healing, but so hard to do because of the nature of shame and self hate. I was at an art intensive one time on a scholarship and I was painting a tree and one student came up to me and said, "I can tell you are a real artist, unlike me." I was really struggling with that what it means to be a real artist. I recently applied for an art residency and now I can't make any art because I am waiting to find out if I have been rejected or if I got it and this has caused a major creative block. I keep telling myself that Harry Potter was rejected like ALOT and that vulnerability is being willing to fail. I really hate being seen as talented because my narcissistic mother hated me but only accepted that part of me but would control and criticize my art as a child. So I am at the point where the art that I make I make because of my trauma and my process in therapy and that makes me happy unless I am dealing with a wave of shame and self hate.

@Tornadic Thoughts One Thousand Thanks for reminding me of the myriad ways creativity threads through our lives and for those I've actually retained throughout my PTSD mess.

@Mal Content Your flower! Gorgeous depth and color. It reminds me of Emily Dickinson's
"Hope" is the thing with feathers-
That perches in the soul-

Which I would revise to say:
"Hope" is the thing with petals-
That brightens within a heart-