Thought I would post something different today as I have re-injured my right arm/shoulder and unfortunately for me I am not even the slightest bit ambidextrous so a shorter than usual post will be called for.
This is a piece of prose (what I call “a poem of sorts”) that I wrote one morning back in 2012 upon waking up in agony from yet another pain-ridden restless night and I was trying to make sense of my life and my pain.
Although I am grateful that those days & nights of constant chronic pain are hopefully (apart from this current injury) behind me I thought that I would still share this poem as it still feels just as relevant today as it did when I penned it.
Rainbows have always been special to me … long before I became an ARTist.
You will always find me looking skywards searching for Mother Nature’s artist palette.
Where There Are Rainbows
From the minute you are born you are already dying.
Dying to live your life to its fullest.
Dying to awaken new-found emotions.
Dying to fulfill your personal goals and dreams.
Dying to find your own Life’s Purpose.
Until the day eventually comes when your life on earth comes to an end.
So between your birth and your death you must simply … go forth and search for your own Rainbow.
Because where there are Rainbows you will find everything that you need in life such as an abundance of rainwater, sunlight, soil, fresh air, flora, fauna, colours, well-being, creative expression, etc and by appreciating and respecting Mother Nature you will find yourself living in the world of your dreams long before your life ends.
Creativity is a healing force and creative expression is a fundamental source of health and wellness for our body and our emotions as well as for our mind and spirit.
I use the modality of creativity to live well with pain because I truly believe that focusing on being creative helps you heal … mind, body and soul.
I let my intuition (and natural curiosity) guide me as to what feels right, knowing that I already have within me everything that I need to fully experience artistic expression as a source of transformation and well-being.
Art and artistic expression helps us be able to make meaning of our creative imagination in powerful and dramatic ways through the use of colour, symbols and images.
The transformative capacity of art and imagery also helps convey our deepest feelings, gives a voice to our spirit and helps us to transcend suffering by helping us to heal ourselves and others. It uncovers the natural medicine found within all of us.
Creative expression is definitely good for you. I believe that it is just as important to your overall health and well-being as is balanced nutrition, regular exercise, meditation and pain-management.
Everything in moderation right!
Art has served us as a means to repair and renew the self via the power of our own unique healing agent our creative imagination and self-expression which helps us create new ways of seeing and being in the world.
The simple act of art making nourishes our inner self and connects us with the outer world via nature and community, locally, nationally and internationally.
Art making is an “awakening agent” which is available to everyone.
Art and artistic expression is a constant agent of transformation and is indeed a purposeful remedy for those of us in search of well-being.
Creative expression and art-making can most certainly be a life-changing practice, with or without you having any formal art-based training/education.
For example, I am a self-taught artist and I create my abstractions only from intuition, nothing is ever planned in advanced; not even the paint colours that I will use.
Art-making has led me on a journey of Holistic Creativity, prompting a life-line of creative expression, revelation, restoration, renewal and of course healing.
It is through creative expression and our imagination that we naturally find ourselves developing new life-stories and experiences as we discover that there is more to life beyond our pain, suffering and illness.
This is how we give our pain a voice and art as medicine is the manifestation of our innate creative drive to seek better health and well-being.
I choose the medicine of Artistic Expression rather than suppress my creativity.
I seek out the creative source that resides within me and allow it to flourish.
In doing so I now seek out and claim my innate creativity during bouts of pain and illness before I reach out for the contents within my medicine cabinet.
Your imagination, dreams, visions and creative urges are all prompts of creative expression that is encouraging you to rediscover who you are and all that you can be by sourcing better health and well-being … kick your pain-demons to the kerb!
This is the article that after reading it prompted me to write the above post.
Recently I was asked if I would like to display a variety of low to mid priced Abstract Energy ARTworks for sale in a Retail Shop setting. I agreed and as it was a brand-spanking new retail venture a combination of existing and newer art pieces would be what was needed to help add a splash of colour to the bare white walls.
My mind was now in a total whir as to what I could actually paint as this request was an out-of-the-blue change of direction for me as I did not need to focus on my regular gig of PAINt Relief … the world of creative expression was now mine for the taking and I was initially full of self-doubt.
Phew, I may have got of to a slow start but I am so very happy that I accepted Dianne’s challenge as I had a fabulous time experimenting and painting with watercolour paints and ended up creating my own unique version of abstract Angel figurines.
I so enjoyed this new-found creative expression that I will definitely be creating more Angelic Abstractions in the future which I will make available for sale online as well.
Invisible Illness, no matter what name it is given, be it Fibromyalgia, CFS, ME, MPN/MPD, Anaemia (and I am not referring to your everyday pop an Iron Supplement Anaemia), etc is an absolute insipid life-changer and unfortunately for a few people it can also become a life-ender.
I personally searched for many years for the answers as to why I was in such chronic pain when I had not actually hurt myself in any way. During this time I was diagnosed with having Fibromyalgia (and many other ‘possibilities’), which I now know was actually brought on because of the stress of not really knowing the actual true cause and the unbearable frustration of always having to justify my “invisible illness” whether it be to family, friends or the medical fraternity.
My fibromyalgia muscular-pain more or less disappeared once I was correctly diagnosed and treated for the actual cause of my pain … bone-pain, a nasty side effect of being a Chronic Anaemic.
With this said, to anybody who suffers chronic pain, pain is pain and the difference between it being a life-changer or life-ender is basically how that particular person copes with the everyday management of their pain and the advice that they receive.
Mental health is one important area that needs to be given top priority as does any treatment that can help change a pained person’s mindset and/or outlook on their life (with or without pain).
I consider myself to be one of the lucky ones whom with time and support was able to successfully self-manage my bone-pain by combining general Allopathic, Haematologic and various Non-Allopathic methods to alleviate pain flare-ups.
My own pain management journey had me pick up a paintbrush and PAINt out the Pain that was frustrating the hell out of me!
As a result, I now offer support and guidance to others experiencing pain by showing them how they can use creative expression to help them bring some relief to their own pain.
I call this my PAINt Relief method and you will find examples of Abstract Energy ARTworks that I have painted whilst facilitating such PAINt Relief either just for myself or with others.
The reason for me writing this particular ART Blog post is because I have just finished reading Fibromyalgia –An Artists Perspective that was written by Jenny Schwarz and published by The National Pain Report (USA) in recognition of Fibromyalgia Awareness Day which is held annually on May 12 (two days ago) … it felt like in parts that I was reading my own story!
This article totally resonated with me and I found myself nodding in agreement with practically everything that Jenny Schwarz had to say especially the part about Painting when in Pain. That is exactly what I did and still do although these days I am known to paint just because I love to paint (pain or no pain).
These are just some of the things that Jenny wrote that I could have easily written and to read the entire article you just need to click on this link …
“When I’m hurting, I paint the pain into the painting.”
“There are things you can do to help yourself. I refuse to be controlled by the pain.”
“No hardship or hurt I have ever experienced in my life has been as bad as this one. Nothing I have faced could have prepared me for the utter pain and destruction this disease has given me.”
“While this pain is a curse, I also now understand it’s changed me and for the better.”
I will always play my part in raising awareness for Invisible Illness, especially encouraging others to do as I have done and that is to try PAINTing Out The Pain as part of their overall self-care pain management.
I have written before about the importance of colour and the significant role that it plays in Holistic Healing … Holistic Colour/Holistic Color = Healing Hues.
I was able to gradually wean myself of prescription pain medication through changing my mindset by opening up my mind and eyes to the world of alternative modalities such as Colour Therapy and Energy Healing.
By utilizing colour and the healing vibrational properties that each colour emits through the rainbow coloured food that I would eat, the clothes that I would wear (yes, you will still see me wearing ‘black’), the colours that now reside in my home and of course the Abstract Energy ARTworks that I would create.
Colour/Color now plays a significant role in my life and I am happy to connect with such like-minded kindred spirits as Donna Frasca from Decorating By Donna who also understands the importance of colour, especially in self-healing.
In my opinion, colour is without a doubt a most beautiful resource to make use of as you awaken your own creativity and holistic healing journey towards improving your health and pain-free well-being.
I used to think that being an artistic person and/or a business-orientated person were worlds apart, you were either one or the other but boy-o-boy was I in for a reality check once I ventured into the realm of creative entrepreneurship.
It seems that these days I spend less time on being creative and way more time than I would like to on pursuing the nuts and bolts (ie. left and right-brain aspects) of my creative venture … creating Abstract Energy ARTworks and helping others alleviate pain as I have done by creating their own Abstract Energy ARTworks.
I read recently that “left-brain thinking has dominated the business world for centuries but as we move from a knowledge economy based on information and analysis to a creative economy built on innovation and ideas that right-brain thinking will prevail” … great news for we creative-types alright!
Left-brain thinking whilst still important is no longer enough to be competitive in the modern business world and the time has come to leverage our right-brain thinking skills and take action in order to be successful.
So I have learnt that business is actually an extremely creative process (and I do not mean dodgy ‘bean-counters’ hiding $ here, there and everywhere) because it requires me to constantly innovate by coming up with new ideas (such as this blog post), products and services.Being a Creative Entrepreneur is a true reflection of me as a heart-centered person, as it is my beliefs, my values, my vision and my voice that you see whether it be online with you reading this blog post right here on my website, my various interactions via social media postings or offline as you gaze upon one of my Abstract Energy ARTworks in real life.
Creativity infuses everything that I do and touch and I now recognize that although I may do things a little differently to others as I infuse a mixture of fun and play into my professional work … which simply put is that ME and my creative work matter (and not just to me)!
I was asked this question the other day … “What is Healing Art?”
I believe that it is when a person uses Art to heal the body, soothe the mind and transform the spirit by actually engaging in either creating or viewing art.
The simple act of creating a visual image on either a piece of paper or on a canvas can produce both physical and emotional benefits for both the creator and the viewer.
There are many levels of healing and many things to be healed.
Art frees the Immune System so it can function at its best, relieve pain, heal depression and raise one’s spirit.
When we make art to heal the creative spirit within us is awakened and arouses our Inner Healer which in turn changes our whole physiology and promotes our mind, body and spirit to heal.
Healing Art is the tool for transformation that people seek in order to enable change.
Art Therapy traditionally places more emphasis on the actual product or artwork created as being the diagnostic tool that the Art Therapist uses to evaluate their client’s emotional state.
Whereas, an Expressive Arts Practitioner would place more emphasis on the actual artistic process and not the artwork created because it is believed that it is only the person who has created the artwork piece who truly knows the meaning inherent in that piece of healing art.
In researching about being in the business of making and selling art I have come across the following “to be successful at selling art you need to solve a problem or alleviate a pain” or words to that effect on several people’s websites. Okay!
Now this I really liked … “your audience is coming to you so that they can buy an end to their pain. In order to convert browsers into buyer’s you need to get in touch with your customers ‘pain points’.
If you do not know their pain, they will never buy from you.” Say what?
Those of you who know me will know that I have lived practically all of my adult life trying to find solutions to solve my own problem of living with pain.
It is my guess that what they (these websites) are actually referring to is actually ‘metaphorical pain’ and not literal/physical pain which has been my sole focus.
Straight up, I started painting to help me alleviate the frustration of being in constant pain without the need or eventual dependency/addiction of continuously popping chemical-based pain medications, hence I call it PAINt Relief.
Now that I am well enough I endeavour to help others who find themselves in a in a similar predicament as me to try their hand at being creative and in doing so change their mindset and view pain differently.
Art does have the ability to heal, but I believe that it is the actual act of creating art that heals more so than the looking at art, but with that said I do believe that if you look intensely and long enough at certain colours that they will temporarily help alleviate pain via the energy vibrations that they emit although chances are that the person may not be aware of it actually taking place.
So it appears that PAIN in all its formats is definitely a part of my Life’s Purpose whether it be living/managing it and/or finding a product or a service to alleviate it personally and for my prospective customer clientele.