I’m wanting to talk more about how I got here.
I’ve only ever studied art as an adult. Most of my life has been filled with mental illness, to varying degrees but it’s been there. When we talk about mental health we don’t talk about all the things that are missed. The milestones including social ones, that come later on because we have to play catch up. My education has been really affected my mental health issues. I left school in 2005 with a few GCSE’s and a GNVQ in business. I was 25 when I started college in 2013 (I think) I started full time studying foundation diploma in Art and Design, but it became very obvious I couldn’t cope with the workload and pace of the full time course. I carried on the course but part-time, this also meant I got to study with the other mature students.
That course and that tutor saved my life, I was suffering from severe social anxiety disorder, severe depression and hypervigilance. That course gave me structure and routine. Alongside learning about art in different forms and trying loads of techniques I learnt social skills. I learnt how to share ideas and listen to others share theirs. I learnt how to be around people, I started to be myself, how I should be.
I went on to study HNC in Art and Design, I’ll be honest I didn’t like it. The teaching styles of the new tutors weren’t compatible with my learning. My mind works a million miles an hour, having to trudge back over old thoughts and ideas was tedious. I also like rules, I like knowing exactly what is expected. I like the rules and expectations to be consistent. I don’t like change. I didn’t carry on studying after that course. It was too stressful and detrimental to my mental health.
I did however discover that I like to work intuitively and quickly. I adore texture, repetition and pattern. I believe this shows in my work. I find pointillism is one of my autistic stims. I wish there was a way I could be completely immersed in images that are full of pattern or texture. I hope one day to create a piece of art that allows the audience to be wrapped in visually stimulating patterns, textures and pictures. Ah, it’s exciting just to think about.
Anyway, that’s kind of it. There’s obviously loads more detail to that story but I’m not sure they’re necessary or helpful.