Dialog Friday - Create a Connection

Posted by Tammy

Amber at the Believing Soul is hosting Dialog Day at the Create a Connection blog. Here is what she had to say and the questions she put forth:

"We are always afraid to start something that we want to make very good, true, and serious." –Brenda Ueland

When have you been afraid to start something you really wanted, or envisioned for yourself? What made you finally take that step you needed to take? How did it work out? I really want to know!

I have been afraid to start something I wanted or envisioned so many times. The main thing that popped into my head while reading the questions was Art though. Until about 3 years ago, I didn't create anything. I was too scared to try. I was too worried about the outcome to even attempt it. During this time, I was seeing a regular therapist to work out some issues. (nothing major, but my therapist helped SO much!) She suggested that I try art therapy.

Let me tell you how scary that was to me! I couldn't even pick up a pencil and put it to paper to draw a stick figure without getting all upset. Really - crying, shaking, the works. I had somehow convinced myself that I wasn't good enough, therefore, I shouldn't even try. I knew, though, that I had the creativity in me!!

My first session with Andrea, the art therapist, was very nerve-wracking. Actually, just making the appointment just about did me in. My therapist was so convinced it would help though, that I trusted her instinct and went for it. I don't know what made me take the step, but somehow I knew she was right - I needed this art therapy. I knew deep down that I was creative and needed an outlet! Andrea asked me to draw a house and a tree - and I broke down crying because I knew that whatever I drew wouldn't be good enough. So - she scaled it back and we literally just scribbled - no pressure of an outcome with scribbling. (one of my earliest scribble drawings to the right)

Her style of therapy was absolutely perfect for me and I'm SO glad that my therapist saw this. We moved from scribble drawings to collages. (an early collage to the left) I went for individual sessions for about six months before I decided I would be up for joining an art therapy group session. I then attended group sessions weekly for about a year. Meeting other women who were in similar situations to mine helped immensely. We met and created art together - with no pressure - just create and visit. Then at the end of each session we would post our art and talk about each piece.

This SCARY step that I took was absolutely what I needed at the time. It was scary and challenging to admit it and then to be open to what Andrea asked me to try. I used oil pastels, collage, tissue and glue, glitter, you name it, I tried it! I also discovered the touch drawing process! I finally hit on a medium that was my favorite - Sharpies of course! I haven't been to an individual or a group session in over a year. And, while I miss the interaction of the groups, I know that I don't Need the sessions anymore. I am creating on my own.

The outcome of this experience was exactly what I wanted - to learn to create and express my creativity - and now I can call myself an Artist - with confidence! (my favorite Sharpie piece below - I am keeping this one for myself!! It is quite large - a full sheet 8 x 11 or so)

4 Opinions:

Janet said...

Finding the confidence to create is sometimes such a difficult thing. I'm so happy that you found it and that you are sharing your art with all of us because you do such beautiful pieces. I love the black and white....there's such movement and energy in this one. And thank you for sharing your story. I'm sure it will be inspiring to others.

Laurie said...

Your art is beautiful. I'm so glad you "found" yourself. I can't draw or paint, but I love to take photos. Part of my job is doing a newsletter and website, its rapidly becoming my favorite duty.

lila said...

Thank-you for sharing your story...I just assumed you had always known you were an artist!
In your post you do a great job o f showing us how you learned with the guidance and encouragement of the art therapist!

Leah said...

what a beautiful story! i loved hearing about your experience and your growth. And i love the art you've made!