The Art of Madness
As many people know, sometimes Art and Mental Illness are best friends - or at the very least roommates. Or maybe like a “Work Spouse”. Regardless of what you’d call it, some of the best creatives - across mediums - have suffered some form of mental illness. Picasso lived with depression. Adele lives with anxiety. Stephen King deals with depression and recovering from attempts to self medicate.
Sometimes we’re left mourning the loss of a great talent when they decide that they’ve had enough, and sometimes we get to see how our favorite makers manage their struggles and use them to their advantage. One thing is consistent - mental illness and its effects can lead to some memorable and quite profound creative work.
Now clearly I’m not in the same orbit as the people mentioned above, but as a creative who deals with various forms of mental illness (C-PTSD, Anxiety, Depression) I struggle daily to find ways to deal with my emotions in a healthy way.
Recently this has taken the form of illustrations. I have always been an artist in addition to being a designer, however my art has never been this personal or this graphic. These illlustrations are honest, graphic, and deal with sensitive topics like Abuse, Suicide/Self Harm, and Depression - but they represent one of my most productive periods as an artist.
This is not a fight that I’ve won yet. I still struggle daily with ideations, feelings of hopelessness, and sometimes crippling anxiety. However, not only have I found my footing a bit more as an artist, I’ve found a healthy way to process my experiences. During this process I’ve also been fortunate enough to connect with others who have found strength and familiarity in the themes I deal with in my art.
I’ve decided to gather all of these pieces in one place. Hopefully, in them you can find some sense of solidarity. Or just enjoy some cool looking art. Either way, thank you for being a part of this journey with me.