Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Experientials Vol. 32

I can't believe that this semester is almost over with, and more importantly that my first year of grad school is almost over... WOW! I have one two finals, and a couple more assignments to turn in but beyond that...

This piece is one that I actually did not work on, but I (with my partner) directed an art therapy group session. The topic was the end of the group, and the group decided to make a group portrait. It ended up being more of individual portraits, all connected by the web.

This is a piece that I did at the end of class. There were no directives, I just made art. The process on this one was so interesting to me. I had no direction, I just went and picked out paper, and I liked both the pink and the black paper. And then I tore the pink and glued them together to create one sheet. I then began making some swirly marks. This started to look like a tree, and so I elaborated on the tree. As I outlined all the branches, the peacock began to emerge, and so that is what the final product became. It is really crazy that it evolved from piecing two things together, into a tree which is growth, into a peacock which is beautiful. There are many metaphors there!!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Experientials Vol. 31

Today we talked about merger and the idea that women often form close relationships with females and "merge" with them. It was really interesting, to talk about this and to dialog about why this happens with women more than men... one explanation was that women are just better :) and just more attuned to others emotions. We were supposed to look at different women friendships in our past and then draw about them. So in my piece some of my friends are represented as circles, as am I. Although we never completely merged, in an unhealthy way, there were some mergers and overlapping.

This experiential was led by the Jungian group, where sandtrays are an essential part. We made our own mock sandtrays and created these environments for animals that we picked out. I picked a penguin because they mate for life and a lady bug because they represent luck. After creating the environment, I noticed that I had only one penguin, and got another one for him so that he could have a mate. What was interesting is that I completely hid the ladybug, and essentially hid the luck. However if you look at some of the closeup pictures, I made the penguin leave footprints in the sand leading to the ladybugs hiding place, and in essence allowed him to be able to find the luck.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Experientials Vol. 31

Today we worked with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and the object of the experiential was to link a thought to our feelings. We started out warming up with movement and then created a movement around our thought. I have been thinking a lot lately about how it feels like I live two separate lives sometimes. The one at school and the one at home., so my movement was almost like a pulling apart. And then we translated this to the paper. What I realized after looking at this is that although they are separate, they are also close together, although there is no overlap. And the "opposing" colors I chose were not so opposing. I chose, pink and purple, then yellow and orange, and blue and green. All those combinations are very similar pairs, and are next to each other o the color wheel. As part of the CB Therapy we were given homework. Mine was to continue to work with this feeling and movement. I would like to see what happens if the lines start to overlap...

This is just a close up of it where you can see the colors and lines.

And this shows the big giant paper with my classmates images on them as well. It is always really neat to work this big and really get the body movement into it.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Experientials Vol. 30

I can't believe that we only have a few weeks left. There are so many papers due between now and then... It seems very daunting now, but I am sure that they will all get done—one by one.

Today in Multicultural class we looked through an African symbol book and picked out symbols that we were drawn to and created a piece with them and then we looked at the meanings to see what we were intrinsically drawn to. My symbols (starting at the top left and going clockwise) mean: wisdom, pride & greatness, and warning against evil. (The last symbol is also a stylized Foofoo seed.) It was interesting to do the process this way and see what symbols we were drawn to and what this might mean to use. I was drawn to the repetitive circle symbols, probably because circles and circular figures are already symbols in my artwork.

One of the presentations today was on the Hispanic culture and as part of that presentation, we made worry dolls. Here is what mine looked like. It was commented that we have the same hair ;)

During group class, we worked in a Gestalt group. We created a piece to music based on how we were feeling as we came to the class. I had come in today not feeling well, having woken up with an asthma attack and now feeling the residual ickiness and starting to get a headache. As we processed these pieces we were supposed to ask the pieces what it had to say to us and then claim this with an "I" statement. Mine said "I am undefined in the midst of chaos." As I was painting the blob form began to emerge and I felt like it was indicative of how I felt. I felt foggy, and not myself, and I also felt the stressors of the outside world (school etc...) pressing in on me. However in the inside of "me" is still the real me, and although I may not feel like myself, I am still me and will regain composure soon. It was a refereshing piece, and I feel like it said what it needed to to me.

These are the pieces that I did while processing the slideshow of client work that was given. They are very small (one quarter of and 8.5x11) and were all just quick to process the feeling that the slides were bringing up. The first was in response to group pieces that were done by women who had been sexually assualted and who now could not express what being held felt like. This is my representation of what it feels like to be held when you feel safe. I feel it is all encompassing and that it almost feels as if you are one figure, though you are actually two. The second is a piece in response to women who were uncomfortable expressing anger and I wanted to see if I could access my anger and represent it visually.

This first one was about the overpowering sorrow that some of the women felt and how that must feel. I felt like it would only be a drop in the bucket... and that each tear is meeting an ocean of others. The next one was in response to the fingerpainting slides she showed. At first I was just drawing and then I realized it was similar to my fingerpainting. I remembered being struck by the ghost image and that affecting me, and this had also affected the women in this group. I guess in ways I identified with them and was taken back to my image.

These two were completed during the remainder of the slides, but I am unsure of their meaning at the moment, although I think that they may have just been a way for me to connect with the slides being shown, since I was having a hard time connecting (because I was feeling so bad).

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Experientials Vol. 29

So we are getting close to the end of the semester and all the projects are starting to be due. This is a piece that I did for my child and adolescent class. It was about splitting and the concept of not being able to hold both the good and bad in one person. So I took these jars and filled them with little strips of paper that say good and bad on them. It was a nice way of exploring the concept.

This piece was a piece that we did while playing the part of a woman that had lost their mother at a very early age. And this piece was supposed to be about a significant relationship. With this piece my character talked about not ever fully letting people in and often pushing them away.

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