It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Fun*Run Time

It's ALREADY that time of year again: The ADAPT Fun*Run for Disability Rights is April 22nd 2012. Maryland's fundraising goal is $8,000 this year. Yes, that's right, $8,000

Donate $1! Donate $10! Donate $100! Donate $1,000! JUST DONATE so we can FREE OUR PEOPLE! I thank you very much for your support!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Art: Something Else Therapeutic/My Blogiversary & 100th Post

Sometime in November I realized that I had written 93 posts and that I could time things perfectly to write my 100th post on my blogiversary. I have nothing really to say that I haven't already said. In July I wrote about how My Blog is Group Therapy, and I few weeks ago I wrote about how I'm Thankful for the disability blogsphere. So instead of reitterating myself, I'm going to write about something else that is therapeutic for me: Art.

I used to be scared of Art. The very mention of scissors sent me into a panic attack. I had a very bad art teacher in 5th grade that traumatized me. I have impaired fine/ocular motor skills and he was an ass about it. Then summer 07 I signed up for Intro to Art Therapy. What I was thinking I don't know. Of course you have to do art in art therapy class. DUH! But that hadn't occurred to me. Guess what? Now I LOVE ART! Why? Because art isn't about the end product. It's about the process and how it makes you feel (I can hear my professor in my head. She only said that about 1000X Smile). I also love that now art has no rules. I had a stupid OT in elementary that used to make me color things in the same direction (it looks better) and was a stickler that I colored things in completely without white space. Who gives a rats ass? I've been specifically shading things in loosely and coloring in random directions just because I can.

I had put myself under a blogging ban for a week to make sure my 100th post was today, and I wasn't doing so well. I needed to write. So I did what I did the last time I wasn't blogging so much-- ART. This time I stuck exclusively to mandalas. I don't think I'd do the greatest job at explaining what a mandala is, so look at for a much better explanation.

My art therapy textbook talked about a study done with children awaiting medical procedures. It turns out that mandalas reduce both blood pressure and heart rate. They made kids less anxious. I didn't like mandalas the first time I tried one, but they seemed to grow on me. They made me feel better this last week. You'll notice the mandalas lining this post (bad camera phone pictures--sorry).

The first mandala I did on 12/10 (top left) is abstract like most mandalas are and made with the Crayola kids pick colors in my 64 crayon box. I find those to be very cheerful and the names are cute. It was inspired from this mandala that I did last spring (first one on the right) that had been sitting under my bed.

Next on the left I did another Mandala using the kid picks colors (2nd on left), still sticking with the abstract. From there I went to this blue and green mandala which I titled World of Holes (right above). It's important to note here that it is impossible to interpret the meaning and intent behind someone's art without talking to the artist. I did this in December, and it's round. Most people would think that it's supposed to be a Christmas ornament (you can tell better in person where it's not so washed out). It's not. I'm Jewish. Here it is also to note that in doing art therapy it is very important to just let your mind go where it goes. I wanted to stick with the abstract lines, and thus drew grey wavy lines. You know when you underline something wavy and then put little dots in between the waves? That's where the holes came in, albeit bigger then when you underline. I don't know why I colored it blue and green. I just did. But when I was finished I decided it looked like the world. This piece has some hidden very personal meaning that I don't wish to share. The ones with meaning always have a title...

Then I did this grey piece with flowers (left above). It's titled Pill Flowers. I got inspiration to do it by looking at the flowers on my comforter (they look nothing like this though). Pill Flowers is both medical art therapy and a utilization of assistive tech (low tech). I knew I wanted overlapping flowers of similar size and shape and without a circle in the middle. But I didn't know how to do it. I looked around my room. A pill bottle cap! of course. They're little enough and flat enough that I can see what my hand is doing when doing the petals on the far side of the flower. I find it weird though that the snap cap I grabed is from my lamictal bottle. I've been having issues with that lately. A subliminal message perhaps? I like this piece so much I just may frame it.

Since art therapy has no rules, why not extend out from your mandala, like the teapot I did with oil pastels awhile ago (on right), or draw a scene like the watermelon I did with chalk pastels for art therapy homework (left), or Rubber Duckie You're the One that I did last year with markers? I don't know why I felt the need to do Home Sweet Clean last December when I was really depressed and not leaving my room or talking to people. Or maybe I do... I did a piece a few days after most of these, which I havent taken a picture of. It's titled Sleep/Facial Disfigurement. If you know me in real life, you know why. For some more mandalas that delve into my psyche, see my post about art from last December. What is that white blob in the first picture in that post? No one's got it yet. Any more guesses?

I would also like to note that I don't just stick to mandalas all the time. Below I have a horse head, 4-leaf clover & horseshoe I did with oil pastels on November 3rd. Do you think it will bring me luck? I also have the front of a recipe card holder I did last summer. I made it out of an index card holder, tissue paper, clip art, and some mod podge.

How could I possibly end a post without including some DISABILITY PRIDE?!?! Below I have Free Our People done November 3rd, and Wheelchair Pop Art done for art therapy homework.


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