Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Art Therapy

I was reading Carol Lloyd's book, 'Creating a Life Worth Living' this evening, as part of a thinking process I am going through, gathering ideas for how I can move my art and writing work forward, and I came upon the following passage:

"For many, the most difficult challenge is discovering what they really want to do.  For others the challenge lies in planning the life and committing to it.  Others have no trouble dreaming or planning the dream, but giant, tentacled obstacles impede their everyday progress and prevent them from reaching their goals..." (page XX)

The image of the tentacled obstacles really stuck in my head, reminding me of the dreaded Creatures from the Dungeon Dimensions which appear in the Discworld novels of Sir Terry Pratchett.  I thought I'd do a quick watercolour sketch, because I am definitely a person who is able to find an endless number of beasties to get in my way, even if I have to invent them myself.  What came out was this:

Uniball eye micro pen and watercolour on paper

Yes, that's me, standing in front.  Its a quick and dirty scribble, but I think it is revealing (actually, probably quite scary to have this stuff in my head eh?).  I didn't think about it until I had finished it, and looked at what I had done properly.  Is the tentacled monster my ME?  Or is it me getting in my own way?  Is that, therefore, what I really think of myself?

Please leave a comment, and tell me what you think.....


  1. Hi Bex, it's Michelle. I'll give this a bash and tell you what I see, for what it's worth.

    The most striking thing to me is that you are looking the monster straight in the eye, you are not recoiling or hiding from it in the picture. I can't say whether this is strong defiance or something more passive as I can't see your facial expression, but the eye contact is very strong.

    The monster looks big and scary but it isn't actually 'attacking' you - it's not really making any contact. In fact it looks almost like one tentacle is patting your head. The monster fills the whole page, it is much bigger than you and the main thing it is 'doing' is blocking your way. We have no idea of what is on the other side of the monster i.e. how your life would be if you overcame the problems represented by it.

    I wonder why you gave it three eyes, are there three things you are particularly working on?

  2. Wow, thanks Michelle, will you be my art therapist? Lots to think about there... especially the bit about it blocking my way....

  3. Kind of ironic and very positive that you DREW something in response to this - ie, tackling your demons head on, as it were! To me, the 'monster' is that crippling self-doubt and insecurity that stops me creating anything, so I found your post really heartening. It's like the battle is half won... Keep up the good work! Xxx