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Exorcising Feelings with Paint - Healing Art

Share Your Story: Healing Art

By dodmanp

Exorcising Feelings with Paint - Healing Art

This exorcised a feeling of depression

Exorcising Feelings with Paint - Healing Art

This expressed a feeling of divine inspiration

About My Healing Art

I began painting over 40 years ago, to make visible the images and feelings that came to me in dreams and meditation. Over time, I found that I needed to do this less and less, and that painting such an image prevented me from 'seeing' it again. If I had a nightmare or a bad feeling such as anger, I could paint it and it would never come back. The original image or feeling was exorcised, although it had become 'fixed' in paint.

My "Inner Artist" Process

I wait for a feeling or image to come to me that cannot be expressed any other way, then I sketch it quickly in pencil or pastels, so that I can't lose it. Then I paint it in acrylics. If the inspiration was just a feeling rather than an image, I would play with different ways to express it with felt tip pens or pastels, until I had something that felt right. Then I would sometimes develop it in acrylics, but often the therapeutic process would have been served by the first stage.

Lessons Learned

  • While I painted something good and magical that I had 'seen' or imagined, the act of painting replaced the original, glowing, evanescent image with a clumsy copy. Sometimes the copy would be quite beautiful, but because I had to paint it quickly, it was of poor quality artistically.
  • When I painted something to exorcise it, the result would be so depressing to look at that it had to be kept in a cupboard!
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