Tag Archives: mural

Using Art and Humor to Diffuse Anxiety

I’ve been using art and humor to diffuse anxiety lately. I’m naturally anxious. My favorite past time is to worry. I would totally win a gold medal in the event of worrying if that were a thing. It’s not, though, because most people think anxiety and worry is a bad thing. I usually do too, but sometimes it helps me. I mean, if I channel it well. It’s just extra energy that needs to be put to good use.

I’ve been working on a mural. It’s required a lot of concentration and strategy and thinking things through. So, I’d paint for a while and then when it felt like I was making mistakes or over working something I’d stop. Unfortunately, I’d still have that energy to get rid of so what I did on those breaks was cut out magazine creatures and glue them together. It was kind of soothing and funny. Then, when I went back to my mural-making I had fresh eyes and a new perspective.

The mural is finished!

Princess art mural

I now have a bunch of magazine characters cut out and waiting to be used. I decided to paint some backgrounds in bright, bold colors and glue those creatures down. I think I may have inadvertantly started a new series. I am thinking about calling them “the misfit toys” because they are all pretty wacky looking. Each one tells a story. I think that might be my favorite part!

using art and humor to diffuse anxiety.
She’s bad to the bone!

When I made “Bridezilla” I kept thinking about how still and composed she looked…and that she would totally be deranged. She reminds me of Stephen King’s Firestarter for some reason. When I set her down on the orange background I knew immediately that she was a woman we needed to keep an eye on. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

using art and humor to diffuse anxiety.
She can’t be a singer because she has three eyes and no mouth.

I am amusing myself to no end. In the one above, the woman has three eyes and no mouth. I feel sorry for her because she really wanted to be a singer, but she did the best she could with what she had to work with. The whole time I was gluing her down I kept thinking about that creepy Twiglight Zone show. Remember the episode with the girl with no mouth? I watched that when I was a kid and it still haunts me to this day! I mean, what kind of accident can cause a person to not have a mouth? What is going on here, right?

That was scary. I feel like it needs some kind of disclaimer or something.

Anyway, I am working on more magazine characters in between my more serious projects. I think it’s a good way to use art and humor to diffuse some of my anxiety. It seems to be working for me right now. I am worried about many things…like Syria and death and teaching Tiny-Small her letters and paying our bills and mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus. I could go on, but I am sure you get the picture!

How do you diffuse your anxiety?


P.S. I think I need a new camera. One that isn’t so blurry. Or maybe just new arms. Got any suggestions? I tried a tripod. It didn’t help much. Plus, my canon doesn’t get the colors as accurately as my iPhone. I am debating what to do next because  don’t like posting these slightly blurry photos of my work.


Working On A Mural With A Little Help From My Friends

I’ve been working on a mural lately. You may have noticed that the frequency of my blog posting has been pretty low recently. You may not have noticed. I still love you either way. Summer is just busy, isn’t it? We want to be outside doing things like the regular people do. My two most faithful readers commented on my blogging absence. God bless them! Both my in-laws and my Grandma checked in to make sure I was still alive. See what kind of people I have in my life? All the good ones, obviously.

I am still alive. Hi! Sorry the writing has been limited, but I have been busy. Don’t worry! All is well.

The roof blew off my old house. The one I have been trying to sell for years now. We fixed it. Phew. Tornado winds are bad you guys!

tin roof blown off
Tin Roof, Rusted…then blown away with the ceiling.

Tiny-Small started going to preschool in the morning three-four days a week to free me up to paint more and so she can play with actual kids. Instead of painting, I’ve spent most of my time cleaning and reorganizing. I had piles of paper to file. Two-three years worth. Trying to file with Tiny-Small helping is not a good idea. I did try to do it with her supervision a few times early on, only to discover later that the vet bills were in with the home loan information and that my medical history had been replaced with crayon drawings. Seriously.

Paper piled on my table
All the paper that needed to be sorted, discarded and filed.

The good news? It’s all done now.

The even better news? I’ve been working on a mural for a special little girl. A girl so awesome that awesome isn’t a big enough word to describe her.  What I want to share with you today is what I have done so far and how I have survived this new experience with a little help from my friends.

I cut a giant piece of paper out of a roll of white, watercolor paper. That took me a week of hemming and hawing and strategizing and coffee drinking, but I did it. I pretended to be fearless, which works even when you don’t feel fearless. Pretending has it’s purpose, right?

Then I nailed it to the wall and stared at the intimidating, blank, white paper for days. I cried about it on Facebook. I got support.

Facebook status
That’s me…a cry for help! I still don’t know what an ABC store is.

I sketched.

My cat sketched.

working on a mural
The beginning of the mural.

I painted.

My cat did not paint.

Progress on the mural.
Progress on the mural.

Tiny-Small helped me figure out where to put the paper birds…because she is better at design than me. Already, at the age of three. It’s unfair, really.

So, I’m working on a mural with a little help from my friends and my family too…and my cat! I’ve never worked this big on paper before. It’s exciting and scary and really, really fun. It’s so fun I sort of forgot about blogging for a while. I think I’m back now. I mean I am back now. I’m writing, aren’t I? Three days in a row and counting…so, yay!

I just got myself an accountability partner to keep me on track. She’s checking up on me daily to make sure I do the work I am supposed to do (for my own good). It’s wonderful to get a little help from your friends sometimes, isn’t it?