Hello happy final tuesday of June (I say through VERY gritted teeth! Eek!) & therefore the final TAT for the first half of the year.
It's very inspiring, enjoy with summer beverage of your choice =)
I am a 35 year old Sociologist and writer. Until 6 months ago I had not picked up a paintbrush in 20 years, historically I was never considered to be particularly good at Art, with the exception of 1 cartoon frog I drew in Year 7 at school. I have cerebral palsy and use a wheelchair, I am also dyslexic. Not a great combination for a writer! Recently I have begun to experience mental ill-health and it was this was brought Art into my life. I started attending a therapeutic Art group twice a week, and was bitten by the Art bug. I now enjoy Art Journalling particularly as I like the combination of pictures and words. I have never liked my handwriting before and now the additional Art element makes it attractive to me, an experience I have never had before. It is also a good way of exploring thoughts, feelings and fears which helps my mental health and my Sociological brain is satisfied as I can include social commentary in my Artwork.
What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
My cerebral palsy causes a weakness in my fine motor control, this makes fine detail drawing incredibly taxing. This led to my gravitation to Art Journalling, and my style does not require me to draw perfectly e.g. I like to paint birds in foliage and my foliage is stylised and wavy.
Have you ever found anything that originally daunted you as an artist that you can now overcome easily?
My problems with depth perception created an additional barrier to overcome. It affected me as I have a negligible idea of scale or how far away anything is, this is due to the brain damage that occurred when I was born leading to my cerebral palsy. One of the members of my Art group showed me how to use carbon paper to help with this issue. Anything that involves scale or depth, I take a photo and then put the relevant landmarks in with the carbon paper, giving me more scope in what I can produce.
Do you ever lose your mojo, and if so, how do you get it back?
Being ill I lost the ability to write, so I had whole days where I felt I had not achieved anything. I can produce Artwork even when I feel really ill, so I feel less of a failure. This positive effect on my mental health actually then allows me to write creatively. I think this is because I have to think more and use my whole brain to produce Artwork, it drives anything bad out of my brain freeing me to do what I love. This in turn has led me to love Art. I say to people, "If writing is my passion, Art is my joy."
Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
I have a blog & I also have a gallery on my Facebook page
Thank you so much for sharing your art and your bravery at sharing your story too with us Anika. I find so much inspiration in hearing stories of how art has positively changed peoples lives and I know I'm not the only one. I get a lot of emails from people all caught up with 'The Art', 'the art', 'the art' and 'I want to get this right or 'make that perfect' but to me it is stories like this & several others I have featured here on TAT as to what 'the art' is really about: 'the joy','the joy', 'the joy'
Would you like to be featured on Tell All Tuesday??
Email me or click the link to find all the details here =)