creative Therapy

Catalyst Eighty-Eight
November 15, 2009, 8:33 am
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-eight:


What’s the best relationship you’ve had so far? It can be a romantic one, a family member, or a friendship. Why is it so special?


We’re thrilled to have Tracey Clark as this week’s Guest Artist.


When I started creative therapy, almost two years ago, my goal had always been to represent all mediums of art. While we have been lucky enough to have a lot of scrapbookers and mixed media artists both on our team and as guests, there are many mediums of art that have been under represented. Photography is one of them.


I’ve asked several photographers to join our team and was delighted when Michelle finally agreed. I’ve also asked several photographers to guest for us and am really happy to finally have a few lined up. It’s only appropriate that we start with Tracey who not only takes incredibly touching photographs that speak both to your soul and heart, but she also founded shutter sisters which is a collaborative photo blog that celebrates women with a passion for photography. Shutter sisters marries images and words beautifully and gives you food for thought and food for your soul daily.


If you haven’t seen Tracey’s photography, make sure to visit her blog where you can get a sneak at the amazing person she is.





Here is Tracey’s art with this week’s catalyst. You can click on it to see a larger version.




Tracey Says:

When I was asked to do this post — months ago — I was delighted by my own potential. Excited for the possibilities. What was the most important relationship of my life? My first thought was my children. To have a platform to celebrate them individually as well as us together in our complicated yet beautiful web of mother and daughters made me reels with possibilities. And to speak of this relationship with art? Oh, it seemed too good to be true. Deep, rich, lovely.


My mind pulsed with the visceral artist’s blood that runs through me. Photography, collage, paint, paper. Messy, thick, colorful, sticky, tangible. The art and my love for my daughters built up on canvas as an ode to who they are, of what they mean to me. Layers of medium would symbolize our history together, layers of emotion deep and intense. I gained even more momentum when I was inspired by some sister friends (Kelly Rae Roberts as our fearless leader) on a retreat where we got our hands dirty in the celebration of art and friendship and love. Yes, I knew what I wanted to create long before I had it on the canvas.


And then life got in the way. I got busy. I got nervous. I tried to chicken out until I was reminded that my photography is enough. Exhale. Oh yes. Of course it is. Portraits of my daughters through my lens, as seen by my eyes, and captured at a particular moment in time; of a gesture, an expression, a moment…that is indeed enough. Every time I pick up my camera I choose to express my profound love and connection to my amazing daughters. And that is enough. Thank you Karen.


Technique Highlight:

I chose to use my beloved Lensbaby SuperWide for these shots. I knew I wanted these images to feel celebratory and offer some texture and movement. The Lensbaby can be magic that way. Bio shot of me taken by my oldest daughter especially for this post.



Thank you so much Tracey; we’re so very very honored.



Here are some interpretations of the catalyst from members of our team.



Iris Says:

I can say that one of my best relationships was with my music. As a teenager it paved the way for me to travel and join music festivals. As a college student, it allowed me to earn and afford luxuries I may not have been able to afford otherwise. As a runner, it motivates me to keep going. As a scrapbooker, it calms me and is a constant companion whenever I create. I made this box to hold pictures that was taken during my years as a pianist. I doubt I will ever get to scrapbook those, so I thought this would at least make a nice home for those pictures.




Amy Says:

This was a challenging catalyst. Distilling things that speak to a meaningful relationship, one that accepts and sees beyond, in graphic novel style was really wonderful to work on and to think about. The quote is from the lyrics of a song by Sara Groves called “Loving a Person.”




Journaling Reads:

The best and most important relationship I have ever had are with the three of you. Jon: I have never felt SO deeply for anyone. You complete me and make me whole. We have laughed, cried and everything in between. Raising the best daughters and going through our life together holding hands. Shelby and Ellie: You both have taught me to be a self-less person. The relationship I share with each of you is unique and will continue to change as you both get older. I have the honor of watching you blossom into the glorious women you will become. Relationships and life do not get any better than that. All my love to the three of you always!




Journaling Reads:

These three men in my life have taught me what it means to love and to be loved. They are the reason I wake up in the morning and the reason I go to bed at night and feel happy and blessed every moment in between. Until I met Jake I didn’t know what it meant to be with someone who can love me just the way I am and who can make me feel whole. Until I had my boys, I didn’t know what it meant to love so much that it pysically hurt my heart. These men make me feel whole. They make me feel thankful and blessed and lucky. So so lucky.


I don’t know what I did to deserve this but I am not taking it for granted for one single moment. I hold them and kiss them and hug them as many times a day I can. Thank you, my boys.





Anita Says:

June 22, 2009 I discovered the love of a grandparent. I never understood it until it happened. I have to say it is the most wonderful feeling and relationship one could have. I LOVE my children so much and never thought my heart could except anymore but once Marlee was born, God proved me wrong. I love this little girl so much!





Journaling Reads:

It’s the most important relationship, the most important thing in the whole world to me. Because of her I am better person, someone completely new… a mama. I look at her and even though it is me who is supposed to help guide and shape her, I find myself wanting to be like her. Pure, innocent, full of wonder and amazement… it’s the most important and awe-inspiring relationship of my life, the relationship we have as mother and daughter.





Lia Says:

We were young when he and I began. Or at least I was. Through the years we’ve been together, he’s taught me so much. His belief in me and my capabilities has given me strength and confidence. His faith leads me to believe that there is a reason for everything, some we might see now and others will be revealed in time – we just need to be patient. His love assures me that no matter what, there will be someone who will not hurt me and who will be there for me no matter what.


We’ve had rough times, for sure. But when I look in his eyes or see his smile, all I see are the good ones, and how good he is for me and to me.





Wendela Says:

My kids, my 3 boys and daughter!! Journaling says “A child fills a place in your heart you never knew was empty.”





Journaling Reads:

The best relationship that I’ve been in is being with you. You make me laugh on a daily basis. We can’t fight or argue without you crackign a joke and making me forget what we were bickering about to begin with. You support everything that I do and the decisions that I make. Having you in my life means everything to me.




Now it’s your turn: show us your therapeutic art around “What’s the best relationship you’ve had so far? It can be a romantic one, a family member, or a friendship. Why is it so special?” 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 so we can share in your creative therapy, too. 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.




3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

To me the purpose of human exisatence is forming relationships. Love and friendship are life’s greatest joy. It would be difficult for me to choose the best relationship, but, as a teacher, touching the lives of so many incredible young people has brought me the great joy. My journal page this week is one I did in class with my students while studying poetry and color imagery. Several students were interested in the process that they went out and bought their own sketchbooks to start art journaling. Now, THAT’S the kindof thing that makes me happy about being a teacher!

Comment by alberta

So many great creations above. My relationship with my dad is important to me. I chose one aspect of this for my scrapbook LO:

Comment by Lynn

[…] Best Relationship […]

Pingback by Art Therapy and Creative Healing Projects 7 « Kate1975's Blog

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