Sunday, December 4, 2011

Finding a Creative Outlet

Art has kept me sane. I have found that throughout all of my medical ordeals it has been my passion for creating art that has helped keep me on track.

When I paint or draw or even contemplate my next art creation those processes help  me to release negativity, frustration and boredom. When you are in a situation similar to mine, keeping your hands and mind busy with constructive endeavors help to eliminate stress.

While focussing on creating a painting for example, my mind is preoccupied with what I will do, how I will do it, and then the actual creation of my art. If I did not create creations my mind might want to wander into dangerous territories like self pity, worry, anger, frustration and the like.

I have always been interested in artisitic types of things, drawing, painting, or anything that involved creativity. I am so thankful I have that type of mind, a mind that looks for and seeks to create beauty.

If you are disabled or become disabled it is particularily important that you seek out for yourself a passion of some sort. That passion could be just about anything, reading, cooking, music, putting together model airplanes, sewing, it doesn't matter. What really matters is that you find something that interests you in your life and pursue it.

For me, art is almost a spiritual experience. I get lost in my artwork, creating it, improving it and analyzing it. It is hard, if not imossible, to worry about the problems in your life while you are focussed on your passion, be it art or something else. It is this concentration of  focus in areas that bring you joy, that become a healthy escape from sometimes unpleasant life circumstances.

I remember my beloved best friend, Kevin, and how he always complained to me he didn't have any hobbies. I never understood that about him. Unfortunately, he was unable to develop a mindset that enabled him to see that he had great people skills and an ability to make people laugh. He could have become a comedian if he had worked at it. He was also a great cook, but he never pushed himself in that area. His lack of focus in a particular area of his life caused him much frusrtation and self critizing, leaving him with unfounded feelings of worthliness and failure.

As you may know, before the loss of my legs I used  to be an interior decorative painter. I created faux finishes, murals, gold leafing, and a myriad of wall and ceiling treatments. Naturally after the leg loss, I am physically unable to continue doing such demanding types of work. Fortunately while working as a decorative painter, and even before then, I drew and painted on paper and canvas. After I was unable to work at such a physical level, I still had my canvas painting to fall back on.

Without my art I  would not be in such a good psychological state, with respect to my outlook, in essence, my art has greatly enhanced, if not saved my life.

Lately I started a small business creating 12" X 12" paintings on canvas that feature children and baby's names. It brings me such joy to create these "mini murals" on canvas. It is reminscient of when I created full room size murals for children's rooms and nursuries, but on a much smaller and more managable scale.

Creativity in all of it's forms, I believe is a gift from God and through God. Your creative outlet whether it is visual art, music, writing or whatever it may be, is an outlet by which we as human beings can funnel our energy to an area that not only benefits us as an individual but to society as a whole.

It was by suggestion of my nephew, Justin, I started writing this blog. What has happened is I have discovered another creative release for myself, writing. I have thoroughly enjoyed putting my thoughts together and voicing them through the writing of this blog. It has not only improved my writing (some readers have told me) but has been a cathartic valve releasing what could have become pent up frustration, while at the same time giving me the opportunity to analyze myself and my thought processes, and finally, perhaps saying something meaningful and benefical to others at the same time.

I had a bumper sticker one time that said, "Everyone is an Artist." I believe that is a true statement. Everyone has some type of creativity, the secret is to learn to tap into it and let it bring you joy,  the elusive joy everyone is always seeking.

The writing of this blog segment has been part of my creative release valve for today and I thank you for participating in that joy with me.

By the way if you want to see some of those mini paintings I mentioned earlier, you may want to check out my website: I hope you like what you see. Bye for now. 


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