I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t learned to express my heart through art. And to be honest, that learning came from being part of several amazing communities of heart-led, faith-and-compassion-filled people.
I’m almost at 1K followers on my Instagram account, @projectgriefart and so I wanted to celebrate by hosting a community Instagram art show.
I asked my followers to share a piece of art they made that expresses what's in their heart.
I was encouraged and inspired by the breadth of emotions that were expressed, as well as the honest depth of each person's response. Art can express so much, and it was awesome to get to know my followers' hearts a little better through this project.
That said, I'd love to share some of my favorite entries with you.
Art for SELF-DISCOVERY & EXPRESSION
I'll start with this art theme because this is a big way that I've used art in my life personally. These beautiful pieces by @griefandart and @my_grief_connection suggest that I'm not the only one who's discovered the power of art for self-discovery and expression ;)
To be honest, a lot of my life has been spent feeling I was “too __” Too emotional. Too broken. Too sensitive, etc. "Something must be fatally wrong with me,” my tender heart thought from a very young age. So I hid my heart, refusing to express it.
One big breakthrough (of many!) came in January 2020 when I read a book called The Road Back to You.
I discovered all the “too”s came back to something essential about me: I have an artists heart. I have a unique gift for seeing the tragic and the beautiful at the same time. I am uniquely able to be with others in their losses and grief, and to wade with others into the deep of their emotions. @projectgriefart (AKA, Danica the Artist)
Art expresses GRIEF over a lost loved one.
Running a "grief art" account, I wasn't at all surprised that many of the entries were about expressing grief over a lost loved one. What a beautiful way to honor your heart, your grief, AND their memory!
This piece is by @pmstitusville. She writes: "I'm sharing this watercolor painting that I did probably 2 years ago. My immediate response to, my brother, Jimmy's death, as I started my grief process was to paint, draw and paint some more. There was stuff I needed to get out. I hurt so bad but it had no words and I didn't want to talk because then I'd have to think and that was just something I could not do. I could paint and go into the zone and I was safe."
She concluded with this hopeful phrase:
"I'm looking forward again to looking forward again." @pmtitusville
And of course, grief encompasses a huge breadth of emotions and thoughts. @wholenest888 expresses the nostalgia and beauty of memory...
...and @glitternlitter bravely and honestly expressed the struggle of reconciling faith, life, and death following the loss of a loved one.
She shared this along with her beautiful watercolor piece:
"I know it is not perfect but emotions in art arent always pretty [...] The slow process of painting this piece grounded me and forced me to slow and think on my questions."
Art expresses FAITH.
Art is a great tool for expressing things that aren't tangible, like grief, emotions, thoughts, and also... faith!
A friend of @jenalward 's "talked of a dream or a vision she had from God telling her she was safe...she was nestled into the feathers on the neck of an eagle as it soared to great heights! It has stuck with me and finally came out in a painting"
@jenalward also submitted a beautiful video compilation of what she's learned through her body of artwork as a whole. You can watch the short video here.
Art for the JOY OF CREATING
I love that @emily_thiroux_threatt was simply inspired by spring!
How have YOU expressed yourself through art lately? Comment below.