Monday, October 1, 2007

Collage therapy

Some days I live in the Land of the Overwhelmed.

Frustration and anxiety dominate my worldview. I get crabby, rushed, pinched.

I'm discovering that collage is instant therapy for those moments.

Last night, I grabbed a stack of magazines and catalogs, and started tearing out anything that grabbed my attention. (Tearing paper, in and of itself, is a great way to blow off steam.) After I had a fairly big pile, I started gluing it down in my journal. Not a lot of planning, not much screening. Slap some glue on it and stick it down.

As the nervous tension and negative energy started to seep away, I slowed down. Now some consideration kicked in. What text do I really want to show up in the end? Why does that photo resonate with me? The storyteller started to fit the pieces together.

Last night, I went to bed after washing my brush and my fingers. I'd let sleep wash away my lingering grumblings, and see what morning eyes could bring to the subject.

I had a hard time waking up this morning (so dark! so dank!). But when I sat down in front of my journal, I felt ready to give those magazine bits a chance to inspire me. I took out the markers, and started writing encouragement to myself. Nothing terribly original, but comforting from familiarity and repetition. And some new ideas showed up as well, when I gave them a chance not to get their heads bitten off by my ferociousness and my fears.

Doodles emerged, once I relaxed and let them emerge uncensored.

After an hour, my life was calling on me to move on. It was surprisingly easy to get up from the table. I could face the outside after embracing my inside.


Anonymous said...

I know that feeling well. I just want to throw things or scream. I'm glad that you have found a way to ease that. I wish I was artistic enough to do stuff like that. Maybe I should take up coloring, LOL, I can do that! Actually, I enjoy coloring and it has always relaxed me. hhhmmmm....

Judy Merrill-Smith said...

There are some neat coloring books out there -- I seem to remember some mandala coloring books that could be interesting....