For everyone living with mental distress, we all find our own individual and unique ways to cope. For me, art has been the best therapeutic tool I have in my arsenal.
As a child, I was fascinated by poetry and music. I went on to study creative writing at master's level, and have always been a musician. But over the last little while, I have come to find huge joy and satisfaction in painting.
For me, painting is one of the few things that stops my symptoms in their tracks. When I’m painting, I don’t hear voices. When I’m painting I get to express things in ways that I can’t always find with words alone. It is incredibly cathartic, and you can take difficult or negative emotions and turn them into something beautiful. I think that’s incredible, to be able to create something wonderful to share with the world - even if it came from a dark place.
Many people assume they are not creative, which isn’t true. Everyone has innate creativity within them - it’s just about practice and passion - learning to hone your skills and exploring your own style. I believe anyone who wants to can create art of any type.
For my 29th Birthday, I am having my first solo exhibition as a painter and poet. It is an accumulation of the last six months of work, and poetry I’ve written over the last couple of years. I am donating the money raised to Voices of Hope, to help give back to a community that has given people like me so much.
If you’re looking for something new to try, why not this?
Voices of Hope wants you to know that you do not have to do this alone. Click here to 'find help' - it's not weak to speak!