Friday, October 15, 2010

Why do we do what we do?

I was just reading a post on Lanie Garrity's wonderful blog 14 Secrets to a Happy Artists life,  and one of her posts focused on this question.  It really got me thinking about my life now,  as an artist and as an art therapist.

I was born with a congenital heart condition, and as an only child growing up in Chicago, I spent alot of time alone, often in the hospital, and when not, missing school often, rarely playing outside with other children.

I was pretty lonely, and art became my best friend, my ally, and my constant companion.

I self soothed, created imaginary friends and worlds, and lost myself for hours in lovely fantasy.

This rich inner world, stayed with me my whole life, and after having open heart surgery on my 13th birthday, I threw myself into life and activity.

But artmaking stayed with me, throughout my life and shaped my life into the one it is today.

As a child, I remember often looking down from our third floor window watching the kids in the alley and courtyard, riding bikes, playing with hoola hoops and on the swings.  I felt like an outsider and wanted to belong.

And even though making art made me happy I wanted to do it with others...  Whenever I was sick, my parents would give me another paint by numbers set, or kit for weaving pot holders.  I loved to make different things, use my hands, and build little people out of mushed up toilet paper, making up stories and traveling across the united states in our long hallway with my handmade paper doll friends....

As I fast forward to my life now, I see that I live a life now that allows me to do art with others, share all the different art processes I have learned, and offer   others the opportunity to explore the healing realms of their imagination.

This is a bit more personal that I have been before on this blog, but it seemed to fit for today, so Thank you Lanie  for your wonderful prompt.

Why do you do what you do?     Ciao


Barbara said...

A wonderful post, Caterina! I draw because I was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and didn't think I had long to live. For me, drawing was about completing my life. "I always wanted to learn how to draw...." so I got busy thinking I only had about a year to learn -- almost nine years ago!

Caterina Martinico said...

so glad to hear from you. Keep on drawing!. You are an inspiration. I often hesitate from getting personal on this blog, but it just felt right.

jcsvisuals said...

Great post! I guess for me art is a visual language. It can be cathartic for the person that creates the work and a connection/bridge for the viewer.

I'm on the Vast Team glad I found this post...

Caterina Martinico said...

I agree, art is a visual language and can be cathartic, healing, transformative or soothing for the artist. They view often projects whatever is up for them on the art and is a bridge or feedback for them as well.
Glad you found your way here..

Karen Wallace said...

Hello. I am also an Art Therapist. Wonderful art and post. Warmly, Karen

Caterina Martinico said...

Hi Karen, Thanks for commenting. I love connecting with other art therapists. Are you going to the AATA convention? If so, I will be selling my art at the Arts and Crafts Marketplace. Stop by and say hello if you are there.