Interestingly, my breast cancer experience caused some art to emerge from me. I came across a free online art class during my chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer that was such a blessing to me and such a help in this process.
The class is called Art, Heart and Healing and is a 4-week course, or rather, a 4-project course using mixed media and focusing on self healing through art. I only made it through the first project, an art journal spread, but it jump started some artistic creativity to come flowing out of me in a wonderful way.
This class was just what I needed at that time to give me something creative to do during my life that was in a limbo because of cancer treatment. I had been wanting to get back into art for a long time, and this was the perfect catalyst for me.
I am so thankful for the internet for many reasons, one of them being the ability to connect with others through video. This has opened up the availability of information and training in so many wonderful ways all around the world.
I don’t think I would have been able to find an art class that was just this style in my local area, and for free! So it was great to be able to find this free class online. It turns out that the gal who made this class in from England, a beautiful lady named Tamara Laporte.
In this art class, she instructs us to draw and paint a representation of ourselves. A whimsical girl with features that don’t have to look like our features at all. She shows how to draw a style that she uses, a very whimsical style of face with huge eyes, tiny thin nose, and huge full lips. It’s very cute, I think.
She also demonstrates how to use a few art supplies that I have never used. Watercolor crayons. White acrylic paint to mix with the watercolor crayons. And then some gesso to create a layered look. And some rubber stamps.
I did not have most of the art supplies, so I just started with what I had. I only had pencil, paper, and the $5 watercolor paint pallet.
The healing part of this class is really neat. She demonstrates all the steps in the artwork she mades in the video. She writes down on the left side of the paper what she calls our ‘inner critic’s negative thoughts’.
For me, it was more of a question: Can I really trust God and believe that EVERYTHING is going to be OK?
She then instructs us to figure out what the positive intention is behind the thoughts. Then she covers the negative words with gesso, a white opaque stuff that completely covers it up. She uses a tool called a brayer that is basically a rubber roller.
Then she continues to cover up the negative words with several layers of watercolor crayons, more gesso, rubber stamps, and even some drippy paint, to make a beautiful grungy look.
Finally, she takes the positive words that are opposite the negative thoughts, prints them out in a pretty font, and cuts them out and glues them onto the beautiful grungy background.
The result is a beautiful positive statement and positive affirmation that I believe connects to us through the creating of the image that represents ourselves.
Since I didn’t have all the art supplies, I only was able to do some of the steps.
I drew myself with pencil.
I painted my face and hair with watercolors.
I wrote my positive statement.
I realized as I was into the process, that this artwork represented me in PEACE. I was surprised at how the representation of me has SUCH a peaceful expression!
And my positive statement was this:
It is OK to BELIEVE
that everything will be OK
that God really does
have me in His hand
I haven’t finished it yet, but it was such a great experience to do what I did. My artistic mojo is coming back, and it feels great. Funny that it came back during my cancer treatment. But maybe that is how things work.
May you be ignited, or re-ignited, to an artistic passion during your difficult journey. May you find joy in creating something beautiful. May you find the negative words that are embedded in your heart and mind and may you replace them powerfully with the positive words that are TRUTH. May you find healing in your heart.
Huge healing and lovingly creative blessings to you!