Art and Creative Writing – “When It’s OK to Go Mad” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

 

Karen Robinson at her Solo Exhibition titled ...When words are hard to find - 6th May 2015 at Gee Lee-Wik Doleen Gallery - Craigieburn. Photo graphed by Angie Basdekis for Hume Leader Newspaper getimage.aspx.jpg

Karen Robinson at her Solo Exhibition titled …When words are hard to find – 6th May 2015 at Gee Lee-Wik Doleen Gallery – Craigieburn. Photo graphed by Angie Basdekis for Hume Leader Newspaper Getimage.aspx. Karen standing beside her Painting No. 43 titled:  ‘Life’s A Washing Machine’ Acrylic on Canvas Feb 2010.  NB:  All images are protected by copyright laws. jpg

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Whilst watching this ingenious YouTube produced by ‘The School of Life’ in collaboration with Artrake Studio – view below, I found myself relating to its content in such a way that it almost felt like, someone had secretly documented my life and forwarded onto this organisation, to use for research to make this ‘The School of Life’ YouTube. I’m being nonsensical of course – but so much of what is portrayed I found to be true. Yes, we can find ourselves on a treadmill where life is full of things we image that we have to achieve and determined by childhood learning’s, adult desires and society perceptions.  We image expectations for ourselves and for others and it is not until something tragic happens and/or when we ‘hit rock bottom’ that we can find ourselves asking why?

 

 

ESSENTIAL NORMALITY OF A LITTLE MADNESS YOUTUBE

 

This above YouTube titled ‘The Sanity of Madness’ is produced by ‘The School of Life’ in collaboration with Artrake Studio and published on 18 January 2016.  They state that ‘there’s so much pressure on us to be always rational, calm and sensible:  it’s time also to say a word about the essential normality of a little madness’.

 

CRAZY MOMENTS IN AN ORDINARY LIFE

It is true for me that there have been times in my life were due to circumstances, I either created for myself or circumstances for which I found myself being a part of, have led me to – just not being able to function like a normal well-balanced human being. Therefore presenting occasions where pushing forward just seemed impossible. Like the examples given within this ‘The School of Life’ YouTube, I too found myself just wanting to stop, just stop and get off the treadmill and just rethink about what’s my purpose on this blue planet.

A wonderful statement I really enjoyed hearing in this ‘The School of Life’ YouTube was this: “No good life can or should go by without a few quiet open incidents of complete breakdown”.  Wow…this was so good to hear, as it can be hard to forgive oneself when you find yourself doing just that breaking down, feeling like your failing miserably at life, letting yourself down, your family down and ‘the whole world down’ well perhaps not quiet the whole world. According to this ‘The School of Life’ YouTube, a complete breakdown really needs to be accepted as normality and not as something that is seen as a form of perhaps ‘madness’. That we actually need ‘crazy moments’ to be able to work through our lives and think of these moments as just “part of ordinary life“. I do love this statement  “just part of ordinary life” and how true it is and a much kinder, productive way of accepting that we are human, fallible and vulnerable.

 

 

PAINTING NO. 43 – TITLE:  ‘LIFE’S A WASHING MACHINE’

There have been many times in my life where I have been just that, a true human being – fallible and vulnerable and at my ‘wits‘ end.  Below here is an example of one of my abstract paintings which I had painted during a time where there was much turmoil in my life.  A time were I was grieving for the loss of my son and caring for my husband during his recovery from chemotherapy treatment.

 

Painting No. 43 - Title 'Life's a Washing Machine' Feb 2010 Acrylic on Canvas 122cms Length x 122cms Wide x 3cms Deep. Abstract Artist Karen Robinson NB All images are protected by copyright laws!

Painting No. 43 – Title:   ‘Life’s a Washing Machine’ Feb 2010 Acrylic on Canvas 122cms Length x 122cms Wide x 3cms Deep by Abstract Artist – Karen Robinson.  NB:  All images are protected by copyright laws!

 

  • Acrylic on Canvas
  • 122cms Length x 122cms Wide x 3cms Deep
  • Feb 2010

 

 

PAINTING STORY

This painting was inspired by how life at times feels like loads of washing tumbling around in a washing machine. Getting pulled this way and that way. Contorted, reshaped, dirtied up, washed out and then hang out to dry – only to start all over again the very next day! A whole mixture of life experiences tumbling into a single life which is shared with family, friends and work colleagues.  It is at times enough to drive you mad…

Karen Robinson © February 2010

 

CONCLUSION:  THE IMPORTANCE OF A GOOD MENTAL BREAKDOWN

But as it stresses within this ‘The School of Life’ YouTube, it’s important to have a ‘good mental breakdown’! A good one “is where we reconnect with the valuable truths that we have lost sight of” and where we also reconnect with “emotions and insights that ordinary life has prevented us investigating“. I feel this is just what I have been engaging in for the last 7 years. I have ‘”returned from the land of madness” and landed “in the fields of apparent sanity“; and through my painting, photo-taking, story-telling, creative writing and volunteer speaking I have been able to regain a good sense of well-being. Its enabled me to push forward and into a pathway that has led me towards a better, most positively fulfilling life…with some ‘healthy crazy moments‘…

 

Karen Robinson © January  2016

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing – December 2015 “Merry Christmas it well be!” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Creative writing and simple ink drawings have become a part of my art for therapy process.  I have found that these activities, practiced regularly, help to ensure I maintain a good sense of wellbeing.

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

Being near Christmas Day, a day where through my entire life has been marked as a special day, I decided to write a piece for said.  As a child, there were many years where we had little to no money to spare but there was always something special for each of us in the way of a gift on Christmas day.  My creative writing piece below is a summing up of what Christmas has become for me now that I am in my early 60’s.

Title:  ‘Merry Christmas it well be!’

“I cannot help but become a little sentimental around Christmas time. It’s a time I think about my family, about how it was when I was a child, how it was when my son was alive and how it is now. I went shopping the other day with my dear, sweet daughter where we purchased Christmas gifts for her father, her husband, for me and I for her. It didn’t seem necessary to think of purchasing gifts for any others, other than a gift I had already purchased for her elderly grandmother. Kris Kringle is a ‘no goer’ this year, just because it seemed unimportant to buy small, inexpensive gifts that wouldn’t be best suited for the receiver and therefore put aside and never used. I guess we are lucky; no… I know we are fortunate, compared to many others, out in the wider world, who barely can feed themselves, or put a roof over their heads, or have any decent clothes to wear, let alone be able to educate themselves, or their children, or even be able to gain good health-assistance, or find gainful, meaningful employment. So it doesn’t seem right to do anything else other than count our blessings. So Christmas time for me is a time to share with loved ones, and to come together for just a short while and reconnect as families. To remember those who are no longer with us, in a way that respects our memory of them. To be grateful for being able to just do that – in a safe and secure environment, where Christmas lunch is plentiful and where within our homes, our country, there resides a degree of certainty about tomorrow.

To all….a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and sincerely wishing you all the very best…wherever you are!”

Karen Robinson © October 2015

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and is unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

 

CONCLUSION

Once again to all….a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and sincerely wishing you all the very best…wherever you are!”

 

© Karen Robinson, December 2015

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – October 2015 “Beautiful Other…” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey, into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  These creative writing sessions not only give me an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give me the opportunity – to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

 

No. 1 of 2 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'Beautiful Other' Feather resting on - Schmincke Ink on A4 Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist NB All images are copyright protected Oct 2015.JPG

No. 1 of 2 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘Beautiful Other’ Feather resting on – Schmincke Ink on A4 Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist NB All images are copyright protected Oct 2015.JPG

 

During this creative writing session, the creative writing facilitator asked us to choose from a bag of an assortment of bird feathers – just one single feather that resonated with ourselves.  I chose the feather featured in the photograph above.  We were then asked to write a short story about our feather, anything that came to mind. The below is what a wrote and I titled it ‘Beautiful Other’.

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

 

 — Beautiful Other —


You are long and sleek and there’s a fine vane running through your centre, holding together a delicate array of very fine feathers.  You stare back at me, in a sophisticated way, dressed in blacks, dark midnight navies and soft, sky blue colours.  At your very tip there is a white colour which looks like you have stopped short of being finished.  I imagine you, in the wing, in flight, soaring up into fluffy, white clouds and then gliding down, down, down towards an open field looking for prey.

I now imagine you heading back towards your shelter, as dark, thunderous clouds trample across the sky ready to open up and let free winter rains from pregnant clouds.

It’s now midnight, and I know the darkness has caused you to rest in one of your caves of choice, where you are safe and secure, where you rest your tired and weary wings and dream of the next day’s flying adventures.

Night has past and the sun is now rising. There is a column of sunlight reaching into your cave and alerting you that it’s time to wake.  You open and stretch out your wings with a vigour that signals that you are strong and ready for what is ahead in your day.  A gentle breeze enters the cave, and you take flight and glide towards the cave opening and out into a chilly but beautiful dawn.

In your sight there comes another, just like you, and you head towards this beautiful other with a sense of anticipation, a sense that this is the one. With little acknowledgment, you fly off together out into the breathtakingly blue skies and up, up, up towards the heavens…

 

Prose © Karen Robinson - October 2015

 

I found it hard at first to get into writing about my feather story but all of a sudden my story took shape in my imagination, took flight you could say!  It was a very enjoyable task and I loved being able to just write what ever came to mind, to write about something joyful and beautiful.  Left me feeling good…

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and is unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

No. 2 of 9 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'Beautiful Other' Schmincke Ink on A4 Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist NB All images are copyright protected Oct 2015.JPG

No. 2 of 9 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘Beautiful Other’ Schmincke Ink on A4 Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist NB All images are copyright protected Oct 2015.JPG

 

CONCLUSION

Writing and sharing our stories within these creative writing sessions – gives us all an opportunity to reveal to ourselves and to others – if we wish, matters that may be unresolved, things we seek to bring into our lives and/or just the pure joy of being able to articulate words without judgement.  And/or perhaps just for our own personal need to say out loud in a safe and secure environment amongst like-minded people.  Creative writing therapy at its best I feel…

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – October 2015 “Support Me!” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

No. 4-5 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'Support Me' Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

No. 4-5 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘Support Me’ Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  These creative writing sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give us the opportunity – to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

During this creative writing session, our usual creative writing facilitator was unwell and we had the organisation’s facilitator as a stand in for our usual facilitator on this day.  We were asked to write a number of pieces and there were two that stood out for me.  This following is my second writing piece. We were asked to pick a number between one and twenty, I chose number one.  The facilitator then gave me the corresponding word for number one.  This process followed through with each participant with us all having a different single word.  Our instructions was to write a very quick paragraph about the word we had each been given. My word was ‘Support’ and my creative writing piece is here below:-

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

 

Title:  “Support” Prose Poem

 



Support me please!  

I need your support.

Don’t turn away 

and leave me standing here, alone 

and destitute.

I need you…

 

I know, I know, I am a pain

and I know

I ask for too much

but don’t leave me. 

 

I will not make it without you --

come back, 

don’t go…

 

It’s OK.

I can be strong.

I will be strong.

I will support me.

I can do it!

 

Yes - I have done it.

Thank self...




Prose Poem © Karen Robinson - October 2015
No. 2-5 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'Support Me' Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

No. 2-5 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘Support Me’ Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

 

I don’t know where these words of mine came from, I just wrote what came into my head and allowed for the words to fall upon the page.  We all had a chance to read out our paragraph and during the reading of my own – I was shocked at hearing my own voice reading my words.  After thinking about it, I realized that it reflected my art for therapy and creative writing journey, that I had reached a place where I was truly OK.

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and is unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

 

CONCLUSION

Writing and sharing our stories within these creative writing sessions – gives us all an opportunity to reveal to ourselves and to others – if we wish, matters that may be unresolved, things we seek to bring into our lives and/or just the pure joy of being able to articulate words without judgement.  And/or perhaps just for our own personal need to say out loud in a safe and secure environment amongst like-minded people.  Creative writing therapy at its best I feel…

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – October 2015 “What Makes A Good Life?” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

Karen Robinson at Creative Writing Therapy with Mind Australia - Northcote Townhall October 2015 NB: All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

Karen Robinson at Creative Writing Therapy Session with Mind Australia – Northcote Town Hall October 2015 NB: All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  These creative writing sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give us the opportunity – to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

During this creative writing session, our usual creative writing facilitator was unwell and we had the organisation’s facilitator as a stand in for our usual facilitator on this day.  We were asked to write a number of pieces and there were two that stood out for me.  The first I am writing about here in this blog.  We were instructed by the facilitator to choose from a set of cards that had been layed out for us to view, just one single card each that especially resonated with us as an individual.  Then using the card’s written quote as a source of inspiration we were required to write a quick, short statement about our thoughts in relation to our chosen card’s quote.  My card’s statement was ‘What makes a good life?’ and my creative writing piece is here below:-

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

 

Title:  “What Makes A Good Life?”

“Waking up every day is a good start to a good life! Having a roof over one’s head, food in one’s belly and clothes on one’s back – helps a lot! So when all this has been achieved – the next on the list has to be – being able to love and to be lovable – is important. The rest is just icing on the cake for me…”

Karen Robinson © October 2015

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and is unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

No. 1-5 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'What Makes A Good Life' Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

No. 1-5 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘What Makes A Good Life’ Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson Oct 2015 NB All Images copyright protected.JPG

 

 

CONCLUSION

Writing and sharing our stories within these creative writing sessions – gives us all an opportunity to reveal to ourselves and to others – if we wish, matters that may be unresolved, things we seek to bring into our lives and/or just the pure joy of being able to articulate words without judgement.  And/or perhaps just for our own personal need to say out loud in a safe and secure environment amongst like-minded people.  Creative writing therapy at its best I feel…

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – October 2015 “How Precious Time Is…” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist, Story-Teller, Photo-Taker and Blogger at a Group Therapy Session Writing about her art work October 2015.JPG

Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist, Story-Teller, Photo-Taker and Blogger at a Group Therapy Session Writing about her art work October 2015.JPG

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  These creative writing sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give us the opportunity – to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

During this creative writing session, our facilitator gave us an instruction to think of a single moment as a carer of another that has been a moment that has stayed with us.  It was within a short period of time that I was able to recall such a moment.  It was a time when I was caring for my husband and where I found myself having to find enough strength for the both of us – in order that we could get through what was ahead of us in the months to come.

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

 

Title:  “How Precious Time Is…”

“I said to my husband “I have to get your prescription filled before we leave the hospital”.  In my own mind – I knew this was going to take some time to process the script and that leaving my husband standing, waiting for me wasn’t going to work as he was very frail. He had just finished receiving another dose of chemotherapy and once again he was very pale, withdrawn, sickly and weak, he looked like death. I hadn’t seen death before like this but he looked like he was near death – I was fearful.  I said to him “Just sit here whilst I walk across here to get your script”.  He dutifully sat – looking like a shell of the person he used to be, more fear filled me – I was afraid he would not live through these terrible chemotherapy treatments. I feared I was losing the man I used to know. I feared leaving him to just walk a number of steps away from him that he would fall over and hurt himself, I feared leaving him for just a few moments.

This image, this feeling of what I was thinking, at this particular time in my life, has not left me and my now well husband has no memory of these moments. I am so grateful that we are at the other side of this time in our lives, and this experience has left me understanding, just how precious our time together has been and still is…even today!”

 

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and are unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

No. 1-5 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'How Precious Time Is...'Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist 11.10.15 All images-stories are copyright protected.JPG

No. 1-5 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘How Precious Time Is…’Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist 11.10.15 All images-stories are copyright protected.JPG

 

CONCLUSION

What I find most extraordinary is how by being given a word, a sentence to write about can take the writer back to a point in time.  Our minds are like a huge vault that contain life’s many memories which have been tucked away for safe keeping. I was amazed how I was able to recall this particular story about my husband in such detail.

Writing and sharing our stories within these creative writing sessions – gives us all an opportunity to reveal to ourselves and to others – if we wish, matters that may be unresolved, things we seek to bring into our lives and/or just the pure joy of being able to articulate words without judgement.  And perhaps just for our own personal need to say out loud in a safe and secure environment amongst like-minded people.  Creative writing therapy at its best I feel…

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – October 2015 “Not A Game – But A Real Necessity” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  These creative writing sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give us the opportunity – to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

During this creative writing session, our facilitator gave us just one word and that word was ‘Solitaire‘.  With this one word we were asked to go about writing a short piece, there were no restrictions – just what thoughts came to each of us and write about it was the instruction.  What came to me firstly – was that it could be a card game, but a card game you played on your own – solo without others and this was the source of my inspiration for my writing piece.

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

 

Title:  “Not A Game – But A Real Necessity”


Solitaire –
 it’s a card game
 you play alone.

It’s when you have decided to be alone --
 the, sometimes, most enjoyable times
 when being alone can be just blissful

when there is no need
 to satisfy someone else’s needs
 or wants

when there is a silence
 that brings a sense of peacefulness within
 and the chatter in the brain winds down to a quiet hum.

It can be a time to recharge the inner child
 so that the adult can function properly
 instead of being an out of control beast.

Yes, Solitaire…
 not a game
 but a real necessity.

And when this Solitaire,
 this game of being alone
 comes to an end
 it presents a time to reunite with daily life
 refreshed
 and renewed

enabling oneself to throw one’s arms
 around life once again,
 with gusto!


Prose Poem ©Karen Robinson - October 2015

 

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and are unlike my other painting method – which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

No. 1-4 Creative Writing Group - Artwork Titled 'Not A Game - But A Real Necessity'Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist 11.10.15 All images-stories are copyright protected.JPG

No. 1-4 Creative Writing Group – Artwork Titled ‘Not A Game – But A Real Necessity’Schmincke Ink-A4 Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist 11.10.15 All images-stories are copyright protected.JPG

 

CONCLUSION

Writing and sharing our stories within these creative writing sessions – gives us all an opportunity to reveal to ourselves and to others – if we wish, matters that may be unresolved, things we seek to bring into our lives and/or just the pure joy of being able to articulate words without judgement.  And perhaps just for our own personal need to say out loud in a safe and secure environment amongst like-minded people.  Creative writing therapy at its best I feel…

© Karen Robinson, October 2015

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Art Therapy Humour – “Looking at life as if it were a work of art…”

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

Art Therapy Humour - Cartoon by 'dorrismccomics.com' Comments by Karen Robinson "Looking at life as if it were a work of art"....

Art Therapy Humour – Cartoon by ‘dorrismccomics.com’ Comments by Karen Robinson “Looking at life as if it were a work of art”….

 

Over the last eight years, I have been using art for therapy, so my story comes from the practice of art for therapy as an individual visual artist/story-teller/photo-taker and also as a participant within art therapy and creative writing groups; and not from a professional art therapist stance. But in saying this, I feel I have been learning from personal experience the practices and benefits of said, in a way that has given me an insightful understanding of its incredible ability to improve ones sense of wellbeing.

When it came to deciding to blog about my art for therapy journey – I firstly struggled to make the final decision, to blog about this most vulnerable part of my life, with honesty and an openness that would bare my soul to the ‘world-wide web’; to be fearless. The outcome has been just amazing from many different perspectives. It has been, and continues to be, one of the most rewarding things I have done in my life. I approach each blog with a great sense of being real and true to myself, in the hope that by sharing, will inspire others to take up art for therapy, in order to improve their sense of wellbeing – it has improved mine.

When I first looked at this cartoon pictured above and produced by ‘dorrismccomics.com’ – these words sprang to mind “Looking at life as if it were a work of art…”.  I have always loved how cartoonists seem to be able to capture a thought, a moment so simply within just a few lines and squiggles.  This cartoon captures it well, we try to create our lives in an orderly fashion, in a sequenced way but sometimes in just goes beyond ourselves; we get to paint outside the lines and we end up with a creation that is unique to each of us…

© Karen Robinson, September 2015

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my my home page!  I hope you will continue to join on my art therapy journey…Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – September 2015 “I am packed to go!” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

2 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 'I am packed to go!' Ink on Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

2 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 ‘I am packed to go!’ Ink on Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  At other times these sessions take me back in time challenging forgotten memories.  Our sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, they also give us the opportunity to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

CREATIVE WRITING HOMEWORK – SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

Unfortunately, I was not able to attend this particular creative writing session.  The Creative Writing Facilitator had set some creative writing homework which I was able to complete.  We were given an image of post card, featuring a traveller’s suit case that was covered in travel stickers.  Using this as a source of inspiration we were tasked with writing a piece 500 words or more, about what the image resonated for each of us when we looked at the image itself.

 

1 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 - Postcard image of a travellers Suit Case given to participants to use as a source of inspiration for a writing exercise 500 words or more.JPG

1 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 – Postcard image of a travellers Suit Case given to participants to use as a source of inspiration for a writing exercise 500 words or more.JPG

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING PIECE

Once I sat down at the computer and started writing, I found myself not being able to stop.  The 1,700 words just seemed to pour onto the page before me.  After I had exhausted my thoughts and reached a satisfactory end, I stopped and read over what I had written.  My travel adventure which I had titled ‘I am packed to go’ had truly covered nicely what had occurred on that particular night and I had found that inclusive within my story was a sharing about how I suffered largely from anxiety and panic attacks.  I wasn’t sure whether I should have included this in my story but without it would have robbed my story of a significant insight into my experience.  After reading out loud to my creative writing session group this week, I felt more confident in sharing to the wider world.  I also said to myself that more people need to be open and forthright about such things in order that there is a greater understanding of these conditions.  To also show that anyone can be a victim of anxiety and panic attacks.  So here’s my story, my personal story about one particular travel adventure I had some years ago.

 

Title:  “I am packed to go!”

It was approximately midnight and I had just arrived at one of the largest International Airports in the world – Guangzhou, China. I had been there before, on a number of occasions in my role as a ‘Product and Business Development Manager’ for one of the largest formal wear companies in the southern hemisphere! Well this is what the company commonly touted and it was reasonable to believe after being with the company then for a number of years. Tripping here to Guangzhou was not too daunting, as I normally arrived during the daytime and was usually greeted by a driver whom had been sent out by the company I was visiting, to pick me up and take me directly to the them and then onto my hotel. This always made me feel safe and secure and I have to confess impressed me to have such treatment even though for some business travellers it was the norm, for me it was a real novelty which I came to really appreciate and enjoy. Being a woman on my own, in a strange country and not being able to speak the language, meant this kind of service ensured that I was able to get on with what I had to do business wise and for me personally ensured that my anxieties didn’t escalate out of control. Don’t get me wrong, I love the sense of adventure travelling to a country I have not been to before; and a country that was so vastly different from my own country of Australia, but travelling did at times make me feel very anxious.

What was different about this particular trip was that I was not visiting the same company again – I was to attend a world-wide trade fair. This meant that I would have to make my own way from the airport to my hotel room and then back and forth to the fair. This may not seem such a difficult task to seasoned travellers and to those that live in the said country, but to me this seemed daunting. During my travelling with this company, I always felt like I was a fraud! A fraud – meaning that I had something to hide or you could interpret it as something that I hadn’t revealed. On the outside of my person, I portrayed a confident and knowledgeable professional which I was, but on the inside, there was this other me! I suffered all my life from depression at times, anxiety seemed to be a daily battle which would often lead into panic attacks, sometimes they could be minor and at other times major. But at all times I tried my best to manage my condition in a way that did not allow others to know or see my inner turmoil.  An inner turmoil that had manifested during my childhood where child abuse, family violent and the wrath of an alcoholic father had to be endured. I never shared these feelings with others at my work, and nor did I really ever shared them with loved ones either; and in actual fact I really didn’t know myself – just how much personal trouble I was in until many years later when I under took counselling for severe depression and anxiety after the diagnose of my husband’s lymphoma and the sudden death of my 25-year-old son. So, this particular travel experience was leading me into feeling vulnerable and hence I was feeling anxious and in a state of panic. But I also need to say here, that I always seemed to find the funny side of life … and this travel adventure story does have a funny side.

As I went through the usual security airport departure checks during this particular trip, I thought to myself ‘it’s OK…just get a taxi and show them the address of the hotel and you will be alright’. What I didn’t know at this particular time, was that there were many illegal taxis’ where taxi drivers would target incoming travellers to get into their illegal taxis’. I found myself being hastily approached by a young Chinese man who asked me if I needed a taxis and I replied “yes”. He tried to take my baggage from my hand which surprised me and I held onto it with a strong grip and said “no”.  He try again and for some ungodly reason I relented and allowed him to carry it. He then proceeded to move quickly up ahead of me and at first I thought “O my god…there goes my luggage!”.  He looked back around and waved at me, indicating to follow him up ahead which I did thinking – “follow the luggage!”. We finally, at what had been a long distant hastily pace reached what I thought was a taxi. Something in me stopped me thinking for a second, but before I could blink, the man had thrown my luggage into the taxi’s trunk, opened the passenger side door indicating for me to get in, which I did, in a stunned state. Before I knew it, the door was closed and to my surprise the man jumped into the passenger front seat and not the driver’s seat. I was shocked, and then when I looked over at the driver’s seat there was already a man sitting in it. All of a sudden I felt trapped…the man in the passenger’s seat turned around quickly and asked me for the address I was going to, which I dutifully handed across a piece of paper with the said address, trying to look like there was nothing usual about this situation.

At this point in time, there was inside of me, a raging panic attack screaming to get out! The taxis torn off in a bust of energy and then I started to image all sorts of horrors, “I am being kidnapped for ransom”, “I am going to be murdered” or “I am going to be sold on the white slave trade market in Europe!”.  I was in an even bigger panic by now, and tried to seem as calm as I possibly could; as there was no way of getting out of the taxi – it was travelling at great speed on a freeway to what I hopefully wanted to believe was my hotel. At this point I was looking for some form of taxi identification and/or a driver’s ID – there was none in sight so this compounded my thoughts that I was going to end up dead somewhere and nobody would know where to find me. So I decided the only thing I could do was to ring my husband, yes that’s right, my husband way back in Australia. Yes, wake him up in is safe and sound bed and tell him that I am in a taxi off to being possibly killed. So I rang my dear husband whom answered the phone with a groggy voice and where upon I said – “it’s me – Karen, I am on my way to my hotel”! He said “good and how was your flight”? Now you have to remember I didn’t want the taxis driver or the passenger to think I was thinking I was in danger, I just thought if I show any form of panic that it might make the whole situation worst. This was very easy for me to do, as I was an expert at not showing panic on the outside! Somehow I had communicated with my husband that I was in a taxi and asked if we could talk until I got to my hotel destination…he realised something was up and understood that was all I could say. So we talked about my flight over, talked about the weather, talked about home, talk about what I was going to be seeing at the trade fair because – it was almost a 45 minute drive and this mobile phone call ended up being the most expensive call I have ever made in my life. Halfway through this, what I can now call an adventure, all of a sudden the taxis stopped at a crossroads, the passenger’s door flew open and the passenger ran off into the night. Most peculiar I felt, but at least now there was just one possible kidnapper/murder I thought with husband still on the mobile at my ear. The taxi driver started driving down lanes and then back onto main streets, then back into lanes which seemed like forever before we came to a sudden stop…well it felt like a sudden stop. With my mobile phone to me ear and my eyes directed out of the window of the taxis towards some signage on what seemed like a hotel, I saw the hotel name that was a match for the name on my paperwork from my work – “thank you god” I said to myself. Suddenly a sense of great relief came over my body and my mind. I paid the taxis driver and jumped out of the taxis, grabbed my luggage from the trunk of the taxis and headed up the stairs of the hotel with my dear husband still hanging on the mobile in his comfy bed back in Australia. In tears and in laughter and all at the same time, I then told my husband all was good, I am safe and sound at my hotel and in one piece, I explained to him in full what had happened and that I couldn’t think of anything else to do – I said to him, with some humour “at least with the mobile GPS you would have been able to find my body”.

On recalling this travelling adventure or misadventure when I got back home to Australia, I did have a very big laugh at myself … all the fears I had and how they had my imagination running wild. I discovered later, that it was an illegal taxi and found out that these drivers target passengers coming out of airports – luring them to taxis’ parked away from the designated taxi ramps. So this image of a suitcase that has lots of travel stickers on it reminds me of the many travel adventures I have had, travelling alone for business, with my anxiety and panic attacks in co….”

 

© Karen Robinson, September 2015

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and are unlike my other painting method which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

2 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 'I am packed to go!' Ink on Paper by Karen Robinson - Abstract Artist NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

2 of 2 Creative Writing Session Sept 2015 ‘I am packed to go!’ Ink on Paper by Karen Robinson – Abstract Artist NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

 

CONCLUSION

I hope by sharing this very personal story, a part of me that talks about being a person who experiences anxiety and panic attacks opening, will help others know and understand that there is nothing to be ashamed about such human conditions.  That we all at times in our lives find ourselves being inhibited by such human experiences, some of us more than others.

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson

Creative Writing Group Session – August 2015 “My Bed! and Laughing at Mother!” by Karen Robinson

While you are here – please check out my home page!

 

No. 2 of 6 Creative Writing 'My Bed' Ink on A4 Paper - August 2015 by Abstract Artist Karen Robinson NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

No. 2 of 6 Creative Writing ‘My Bed’ Ink on A4 Paper – August 2015 by Abstract Artist Karen Robinson NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

 

 

INTRODUCTION

My Creative Writing Group Sessions always leave me feeling like I have taken a little journey into a new world of endless possibilities, a world where it can be of utter truths or pure fantasies.  Our sessions not only give us an opportunity to engage in creative writing exercises, but also give us the opportunity to listen to others whilst they share their precious words.

 

THIS CREATIVE WRITING SESSION’S TASKS

We engaged in a series of creative writing tasks during this session but I have chosen just the two to share within this weblog and are here below:-

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING No. 1 – The Creative Writing Facilitator asked us to write a piece within a five-minute sprint.  It was to help push the editor brain into the background, in other words to write without the self editor getting in the way of the writing.  I did this below but afterwards, I couldn’t help myself going over my writing piece and just add one or two words and fix some wording that didn’t sound right once I read it out aloud to myself.  Very little was changed!  I have to confess that I didn’t stop at five minutes as I felt the need to continue to the point where my writing piece felt finished, that it had come to a natural end for me.  The choices of subject matter were (1) beds or (2) a favourite movie and I chose beds. 

Title:  “My Bed”

My bed is my haven and a place where I can rest my now aching body and rejuvenate my sole! My husband and I just recently purchased two new beds. Mine is soft and roomy and makes me feel safe and at ease with the world. I feel so fortunate that I can go to bed knowing that I am safe, and that in the morning after lying in my bed, will be the birth of a new day. A new day that presents new challenges, new experiences and a day closer to my eventual end, the end of my natural life. In knowing this, I say to myself I’d better make sure, I make the best of each and every day!
From my bed I can see out my window, out into the outside world where trees rustle in the breeze, where the local native birds hop from branch to branch and drink at the newly placed bird bath. I see them having a wash, fluffing out their feathers to dry and then flying off into the bush searching for food and shelter. I sometimes hear the neighbour start-up his Ute very early in the morning and head off to work. He appears to be a good man, a good provider for his family and a neighbour that causes no issues.
Other times I just lay in bed with the radio on and with my eyes closed, just listening to the BBC news of the world in the wee hours of the morning and around 6am the ABC news of the day. Sometimes the news is dark and leaves me thinking that the world is not a very nice place to live in – as there seems to be so much evil in the world and at other times, I hear programs that lift my spirits and gives me hope for future generations.
When the morning sun rises, it tells me it’s time for me to rise as well. I turn out of my soft bed, fold the top sheet with its accompanying comfy wool blanket up to the top of the bed, and then pull the Doona up over all of this, to complete the make. This act is like a closure of the night, and the signal that the day is now ahead. It feels like a subliminal message being whispered to me saying – “it’s a new day Karen…now go do your best!”

 

© Karen Robinson, 1st August 2015

 

 

MY CREATIVE WRITING No. 2 – The Creative Writing Facilitator asked us to create a cluster of words around the given word ‘humour’.  We were told that by creating a cluster of words it can help generate ideas and insights quickly and easily, break through internal barriers, help get our writing thoughts unstuck, and can assist in communicating and understanding others. Upon the sheet of A4 paper given to each of us to use, we went about brain storming for other words that came to mind when we thought about ‘humour’.  Once we had completed our individual mind maps, we were asked to share it with the person sitting next to us and then to write a story about just one of the words on our mind map and I chose ‘false teeth’.  It was one of the words that had conjured up in my mind, a very funny incident with my mother when I was just a teenager.  I should say it seemed at the time very funny to me as a teenager but perhaps it was not so funny for my poor mother!

Title:  “Laughing at Mother”

I remember a particular time as a teenager when my mother was having a very serious argument with me. We were screaming at each other, it was full on verbal abuse towards one another at its worst. I cannot remember the details of this tirade of back and forth abusive communicate we were engaging in, but I can remember what brought it to an end! My mother was screaming furiously when all of a sudden her top false teeth came flying out of her mouth! At first we were both astonished and wondered what had just happened. Then when I realised that my mother’s false teeth had flown out of her mouth whilst she had been berating me – I just burst out laughing as it was the funniest thing I had ever seen. As a teenager this was a wonderful end to what had been a very serious encounter with my mother. My mother did not see the funny side of this event and collected her false teeth where they had landed but for me, as a teenager, this too just seemed to be even funnier. It was one of the very rare times where my mother seemed defeated and in some way sorrowful but my teenage humour just enjoyed the event too much. One for daughter and nil for mother – a teenager’s view of humour!”

 

© Karen Robinson, 1st August 2015

 

CREATIVE WRITING INSPIRING ART!

After each creative writing session, I personally like to use my creative writing stories to inspire an art work.  These artworks are not ‘masterpieces’ but are an important part of a therapeutic process that I enjoy; and helps complete my art for therapy journey after each creative writing group session.  These particular paintings/art works are produced in a quick and spontaneous manner and are unlike my other painting method which is planned and takes many, many hours to complete.  I enjoy both methods!

 

No. 6 of 6 Creative Writing 'My Bed' Ink on A4 Paper - August 2015 by Abstract Artist Karen Robinson NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

No. 6 of 6 Creative Writing ‘My Bed’ Ink on A4 Paper – August 2015 by Abstract Artist Karen Robinson NB All images are protected by copyright laws.JPG

 

CONCLUSION

Once again, after our creative writing session, we headed off to the local restaurant to share a meal together and engage in good conversation – such a wonderful privilege. Thank you for joining me on this Creative Writing Group Session Journey!  Please click here to view previous Creative Writing Group Sessions.

 

NB:  For the purposes of this weblog series “Creative Writing Group”, I will not be mentioning any names or personal details of participants or even the name of the organisation that runs the sessions.  Individuals have the right to privacy, so it will only be about my own experience – and broad statements about each particular session.  I hope you will understand.

 

Whilst you are here – please check out my home page!  My Art Therapy JourneyA window into the soul of an Abstract Artist through art therapy and storytellingby Karen Robinson