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Being an artist and complex-PTSD

Updated: May 18



I had a blog post half prepared and then I met up with an artist friend and I thought I would write about that.

We always cover a wide range of topics but this particular meet up ended up being more like a tutorial, I was taking notes, I kid you not!

We first met over 10 years ago and have journeyed on parallel tracks pursuing our own artistic goals. Both of us have gradually metamorphosed into the artists we are now. Her severe dyslexia hampers her communication via written means but verbally she is deeply impressive. She has an aura and a passion for art / creativity and is finding her place within the local art world, being at times contracted to two local prestigious museums and despite also not buying into a lot of the art world hype.

One of the good things to come out of our talking was reflecting on of the importance of art / creativity. At a superficial level it is “entertainment”, a “pretty picture for the wall”. But as I make work, grapple with the complexities of materials, ideas, form, expression of concepts it is my life itself. I make work because I don’t have a choice, it has an energy of itself which forces its way to the surface.

We talked about this website and blog. I’m going to be making some tweaks and changes to reflect it’s purpose and being.

One key issue is that I could keep it all private, a journal for myself but I choose not to, so why not?

My experiences as a child, the complex PTSD I experienced, directly fed into the artist I am today. The two things are interwoven together, my mental health issues, the ways I express my creativity, they are all one. And one of the key things for me was that I had no form of self expression as a child. Now as an adult I have found joy, solace, comfort, peace, resolution, enlightenment through that creativity. Now I have the voice I lacked as a child. And maybe there are others out there who can relate in some small way? It was a lonely existence, my childhood, maybe someone will stumble across this blog and think in some small way, yes, I can recognise that in myself too.

I trained as a doctor and then a psychiatrist, psychotherapist in search of answers about myself, but I found the resolution, lifting, resolving, in my art.

The imagery from my sketchbook I’m using to accompany this I’ve used before, but it is too relevant not to reuse.

Fresh from my yoga class I’m sending out deep yoga exhales of love and peace to anyone out there who needs some!


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