Filed under: catalyst
As always, thank you to all of our visitors and all the encouraging comments you left for us. For those of you who did, thank you for playing along with us.
Ok! Here’s catalyst number eighty-six:
Write a letter to your younger self.
We’re so excited to have Christine Mason Miller as this week’s Guest Artist.
To make this week’s art even more fun. Christine made a page of word art for you to use in your art. These are all different prompts she created and you can use the actual print out in your art like some of us did or you can use the sentences/ideas she listed. If you click on the image below, you can download a PDF version.
Christine’s artwork has wings. It has soul. It’s soft and beautiful and touching. You can easily get lost in her amazing art. I am so honored to have her here. She is also the author of the stunning Ordinary Sparkling Moments. And she teaches beautiful workshops including ones at Squam.
Here is Christine’s art with this week’s catalyst. You can click on it to see a larger version.
I intentionally wanted to keep this collage simple. Since I do so much collage work in general, it was nice to give myself the freedom to work with just a few layers and elements. When I think of being a little girl and what the word “beautiful” meant to me then, it was about being a ballerina, so when I came across this image it was perfect.
No special techniques with this piece aside from using a few Photoshop filters on the original scanned image. What is so fun about Photoshop is trying different filters and adjustments to see what happens. Because the original piece was so simple, I liked being able to add a little more texture and grain to the image in Photoshop.
Thank you so much Christine; we’re so very very honored.
Here are some interpretations of the catalyst from members of our team.
no matter how un-important you may feel or think you are… you aren’t. no matter what goes on in life… you will always have someone that cares about you… someone that loves you… someone that needs you… someone that you will always be important to.
I machine stitched my rainbow patterned paper on using coordinating threads. I also used Diamond Glaze on top of the raindrops that I cut from patterned paper to give them a watery look.
For this catalyst, I wrote a letter to myself, to the girl I once was containing a series of reflexions. The deepest one refers to the time this girl lost trying to get social approval, pleasing the others. I told my younger self that she would only get her value when she decides that what matters is pleasing herself. I told her she is like no other…
I love to write sooooo much to myself as a little girl…!! All the things, good things and bad things, that I know today….I’m glad that I didn’t know how my life turns out, when I was three. It’s a photo of me. I stamped the prompts on the photo with black Stazon ink.
Well this is the book. The one that started the whole thing. The one that led me to start this site. I had put it away a long time ago, not sure what I wanted to do with the cover. I took it out and took a piece of fabric and stitched some interlocked hearts. Some beads and a heart and a note to remember: loved. This book is a reminder that I was loved. I am loved.
Dear Anita, If there were one thing I could go back and tell you, that would have to be that you should SLOW DOWN and ENJOY LIFE. Put that laundry down and play with your kids. Forget about all those things that you think you HAVE to get done right this minute and snuggle with the one you love. Life will pass you by way to quickly. You must not have no regrets! Enjoy your kids and family while you are still young. Squeeze them all just a little tighter. Love, Me
Dear Rachel, I want you to know above all else, that you are important. I know that you often times feel like everyone and everything around you is more important and worthwhile than you are, but that is not true. You don’t always have to figure things out for yourself and it is okay for your voice to be heard. So let it be heard sometimes. You don’t always have to be okay and you don’t always have to be in the background, unnoticed. There is a degree of comfort in being unnoticed but it will also make you feel lonely and unimportant at times, the times when you need to know your value the most. It’s okay to cry, it’s okay to break down and it’s okay to ask for help. Because you are important. Important to your family and your friends and not just because you are unnoticed and easy going, but because you are you. And that is Important. Never think that you are unimportant, because you are important. So important that if you knew how much you are loved it would blow your mind. Never forget how important you are. Love always, yourself
Friends have always been important to me, and I’m the type who loves and gives her whole heart to her friends. In the past couple of years, sadly I fell out with a couple of people who were very close to me. It broke my heart, and angered me a little when friends who I treated as my family could disappoint me and treat me in ways I never could treat them. I then realized that this happened to me a few more times before when I was younger. I never seemed to learn my lesson – that I should watch my own heart and its well-being instead of giving it away to people I called ‘friends’. Each time I was betrayed by a friend, I felt unimportant and all that I had done for the friendship worthless. As if it was never enough.
I now remind myself to keep a distance, to not sacrifice all for a friend, to be fond of but not love them. But I am still a dreamer. Only because I still have a close circle of people who love and support me, we share the same level of EQ, who are understanding and who don’t judge, who want me to be the best person and yet won’t hurt my feelings, and who appreciate me.
They instill the faith in me that our friendships are important in their lives. I want to tell my younger me that it’s okay to love all that you know and that it’s okay to have lost friendships, because someone will always value her and feel that she is important to them.
Working on this piece was a challenge in many ways. There were things I wanted to say to my younger self, but what was strongest in me was the need to tell her three things in particular, one of which was… you need to find the art and line within you. Many other things ended up in my preliminary sketches as I tried to find the right storyline and flow for such a letter rendered in this format. In the end, I realized such a letter could be a book in and of itself, much more involved than a single page could contain. [The final line has been obscured here on purpose.]
Now it’s your turn: show us your therapeutic art around “Write a letter to your younger self.” I urge you to give it a try. It can be any form of art as long as it speaks to you.
Leave us comments with your work and you will qualify for the RAK we offer to a random participant. If you don’t have a community or blog where you upload photos, you can upload them on our flickr group.
Remember, this is not a competition. If your art makes you feel even a bit better at the end, you’ve won.
Until next week, enjoy each and every moment.
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