Art is an amazing medium of healing for both the artist and viewer. Art is known to be included under the title, "Healing Arts". Art making is said to be self healing. By creating art, artists are invited to explore and enhance various parts of themselves. The options are endless, it can be anything having to do with mind, body, or spirit. A series only serves to enhance the healing by allowing one to work through the process in stages. Viewers are invited to partake in the healing experience by exploring the effects the works have on them and what they point out concerning them personally.
My life changing series. In 2010 I did a painting of a flower. It was much larger than life to give it a wow factor. I had taken it out of its natural setting and placed it against a painterly background. The background was reminiscent of something you would find in a high end portrait studio. I had been in an artistic slump, one where I found myself unable to paint for a year until I came across this flower that I just had to paint. I decided to imagine this flower as being representative of myself. By the time I was completing the piece I decided that I wanted to do a series. I would call each, "Self Port as a Flower" The first was entitled "Self Portrait as a Flower #1" and they went on consecutively from there. The series was transformative for me and also allowed me to see myself at a higher level. I found that each was biographical on one level, but they also allowed me to see higher aspects of myself.
Working on the series allowed me to value myself as something beautiful and precious. I began this series when I was in a rough period of my life. My marriage was ending, I was middle aged, and I felt that the world was telling me that I had little worth. I wanted to say back, “I’m beautiful and I should be appreciated like a flower in bloom!” It seemed that with each flower I painted I began to see myself the same way that I was gazing at the bloom. Little by little I was taking my self worth back. In the end I can out more confident than I had ever been in my life. I wanted the viewer to feel the same effect when looking at and taking in the energy of the works.
In 2012 I did a Sketchbook about the series for the Brooklyn Sketchbook Library. The Sketchbook Library is available to visit in person or online. The sketchbooks are fantastic artist books created by artists of all levels. I wanted to create one about the "Self Portrait as a Flower" series. In it I described the series in story format with words, collages, and paintings. The Sketchbook Library is a great place to visit with books on absolutely every subject you could think of. It is something I'm truly glad I participated in. Blow are photos from my project. I hope you enjoy it. Remember whether you look at art or create it. It is a wonderful mode of self healing.