Kindness

Kindness © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I’m really not sure the colours work.

The border was a design I drew back in January using Uniball Unipin and/or Sakura Pigma micron pens on dot grid paper. I’ve added colour and texture digitally, as well as the typography.

Lalochezia

Lalochezia © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I have a life-long fascination with words and facts that appeal to my curious, squirrel-y mind. I like unusual words. I also like etymology – the origins of words.

Since my first episode of severe mental ill-health due to burnout and cPTSD, I’ve found it difficult to read and retain information as I once used to as well as to recall information that was once on the tips of my neurons.

I’m finding it much easier to read and retain some of what I’ve read, thank goodness! And with that comes a desire to seek out interesting words and facts once again.

Lalochezia comes from the Greek ‘lalia’, meaning speech, and the Latin ‘chezo’, meaning to relieve oneself.

I admit, quite freely, to lalochezia. Not just for physical pain, but emotional pain too. There’s nothing quite like a swear word full of hard consonants to express the pain, frustration or upset verbally.

A friend of mine is constantly amused by my use of swear words even though I sound ‘quite posh’, according to her anyway. I thought of her when I found this particular word and just knew I had to use it for one of my ‘quote’ artworks.

The floral motif is influenced by Art Nouveau. It is highly stylised but there’s also the influence of Celtic knotwork in the way the foliage intertwines and overlaps.

The typography was completed using Affinity Publisher. The artwork was completed in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro. In both cases I used a Microsoft Surface Studio and Microsoft Surface Pen.

Flowery

Flowery© Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

Today, I’ve been drawing little flower motifs and borders to go along with a lovely quote about flowers and hope.

The line art was drawn using Tombow Fudenosuke pens on ClaireFontaine dot grid paper. Colour, typography and background texture have been added digitally using Autodesk Sketchbook Pro, Microsoft Surface Pen and Microsoft Surface Studio.

Flowers are some of my favourite things to draw, whether they be highly stylised or more realistic.

My snowdrops and crocus have the feel of being wood cut or lino cut and printed, that kind of vintage feel. The flexible nibs on the Fudenosuke pens help me achieve this look. Also, the fairly simple colouring and addition of texture help too.

I’ve left the colouring as is, maybe for now. However, I now have these motifs ready to use in other projects, as they occur to me. Colour certainly helps to lift them off the background and bring them to life.

Art is love.

I love to draw and create. Creating art is also very much part of my self-care, self-compassion routine. This drawing was very much done for self-care after a couple of very ‘people-y’ days left me emotionally and mentally drained.

So, being creative is both a way of me expressing my love of creating art, sharing that love with people, and also showing myself self-compassion and self-care.

I always hope my art will warm people’s hearts, make them smile, bring a little bit of beauty into their lives and the world.

Quote about therapy

Artwork © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

Trigger Warning – the following words contain some references to my past mental and emotional ill health.

I’ve begun to realise that I am as recovered from CPTSD as I’m going to be for now. So, yesterday, I made the decision, after lots of thought, that it was time to leave a month or so until my next session. The longest I’ve been without therapy is three weeks. This time it will be five weeks. It’s a test for me to see if I am as resilient as I think I am. Still, there’s also that little bit of a safety net that if I have issues I know, I’ll have a therapy session to sort out what to do next.

I know that in the future, as life experiences trigger some CPTSD reaction in me, I may need some more EMDR sessions to help me resolve the issues. Leaving therapy, for now, is necessary, but not without the possibility of returning as I need to.

How did I know I’d reached that point? Well, I recovered well from my hiccough, emotionally and mentally, over Christmas and New Year. Surprising well, actually. Even my therapist said that!

Nothing new has come up that needs to be processed it seems. I’ve had the feeling I’ve been groping around for issues to work on in therapy for a long while. Maybe I was ready a while ago but wasn’t quite prepared to leave that safety net of that one person who has always been there to listen, question me and help me to understand and heal myself. I feel I am ready to cut loose now, but suddenly, but gradually.

The soft inner smile, feeling of contentment and ease is present most days. I also have a feeling of what I can only describe as hope and optimism.
These feelings are my touchstones, the way I want to feel most of my days of the remainder of my life.

It still saddens me that it’s taken me until I’m 56 years old to discover them, to heal enough of the traumas of the past to allow them to be fully present nearly every day. I lived my life believing the way I thought and felt was ‘normal’ and that everyone was like this.

It took an emotional and mental breakdown to get me to accept that I was in a severe amount of emotional and mental pain and to seek the help I needed to heal that pain. EMDR has been that help, that therapy has allowed me to heal those wounds.

Sometimes things happen, and my emotions can overshadow the contentment and smile. However, I can still feel those touchstones, reminders that the emotional storm will pass and the smile will shine out once again. This emotional weather has happened a few times since I first discovered my touchstones, but the weather has always passed. Sometimes with the help of therapy, but more often by itself, given self-soothing, self-care and self-reflection.

I am so grateful to have had such a skilled therapist. Still, it’s now time for me to find new ways to engage with like-minded people, not in huge groups, as that would really cause problems for my introverted nature.

I’ve been having EMDR therapy for nearly five and a half years. It seems a long time, yet it’s not that long, really. A lot of commitment and work has been needed, but I’m reaping the rewards of my efforts.

The quote epitomises the way I feel about therapy now. In my darkest days, when I started EMDR. Linda, my therapist, has been that one person who has consistently been there to accompany me on this journey of healing and recovery from CPTSD. She has helped me discover that part of me that wants to experience life my own way, that part which is content, gently smiling, resilient, optimistic, more accepting of myself, kinder to myself, and much more I can’t yet put into words.

I’m not perfect; no one is. However, I’m as emotionally and mentally well as I’m going to be without living life. Only the ups and downs of life will reveal triggers for the remaining CPTSD. Some may never be revealed and not be an issue. Others I may be able to deal with myself, some I may need help from EMDR to process them and heal that still wounded part of myself.

It’s actually quite exciting. All I need to do is to transform that feeling of excitement and optimism into action such as a couple of nights away by myself and finding groups to join where there are like-minded people to begin with.

Flower quote #2

Flower Quote #2. Artwork © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

I just had to rework the flower from yesterday, and this is what I came up with. I’m much happier with it for sure. I like the soft, almost velvety texture I’ve achieved with the flower.

Looking at it this morning, with fresh eyes, I think the typography could be a little smaller. However, I’m much happier with this one.

Flower quote

Flower quote. Artwork © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

A variation on the abstract, stylised flowers of a day or two ago, with a lovely quote.

I got too heavy handed with the texturing in this one, but I just wanted to try the flower out without an outline. I’m disappointed with the texture, and it was too late for me to undo it by the time I realised it. Hopefully I’ll learn to save my work more often at points before I do something where it could go critically wrong and I can backtrack easily.

It was an enjoyable process, even though I’m more than a tad frustrated with myself. Still, it’s an experience to learn from for sure.