Today, I share with you a very personal art journal page that came about because of the loss of my oldest and dearest friend recently. I share this with the hope that others will be able to use art to heal their wounds. The only way my soul can begin to process this is through art.
My art journal gave me a magical gift today – a way to talk to my friend, a person who had accepted me so completely for who I am, warts and all. I have no idea if it was really her, my subconscious, or something else, but what I do know is, it helped me move one step forward in the healing. Here’s how it went…
Letting go of control and letting the art guide me.
No asking why because there is no reason that makes sense as to why it was her time to leave. Following the impulses with messy, sloppy stamping with acrylic ink.
Pops of color added here and there as I remembered our exploits together.
Slowly adding the yellow color while letting the good memories of our adventures as roommates in college come through like sunshine.
Hurt. Loss. Anger. Grief. All captured with layer after layer of color.
Feeling the pain, getting angry, and letting it all out in finger painting. I kept adding layers and colors until I began to hear her trying to tell me something.
But I couldn’t make out what she was saying. It wasn’t clear what message she had for me yet, so a hazy touch of script stenciling.
Her message appeared softly to me. I could hear her in my head as she gently spoke to me, helping me find just a drop of peace.
I will remember. In fact, I will never forget the grace she brought to this world, the power of her determination, and how she generously shared her smile with everyone she met.
But it wasn’t her she wanted me to remember. She didn’t want a fuss made about her. She was telling me to not be afraid. To not be angry. Once again, she was trying to give to others.
As my way of honoring her, I share this very private art journal page with the hope that this process offers others a way to begin to find peace.
- Rembrandt’s Words stencil
- Uplifting Words stencil
- Large Butterfly stamp from Judikins
- Small Butterfly stamp -manufacturer unknown
- Acrylic Inks
- All Purpose Ink yellow and Fantastix
A Colorful Gelli Print Party will return next month.
Oh, Carolyn, I am very sorry to hear of your loss! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts as you expressed them through your art. I, too, have found that sometimes trying to talk with others about my feelings or struggling to logically think-through a deep-felt hurt just isn’t sufficient to help the healing get underway. Taking the time to sit down with our most comfortable creative medium, one-on-one, and just letting our feelings pour out in whatever way they want can really be a much-needed balm to the soul. Your friend sounds like an amazing person, and my most sincere thoughts and prayers are with you as you go through this very difficult time
Thank you Mary. I so agree that the logically trying to think through it doesn’t heal the way using paint to does.
I am so very sorry for your loss.
Thank you for sharing the beginning steps of your healing through the process of art. This journal page spread is a wonderful tribute to your friend, and I truly believe in that the process of art helps us heal.
Thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers.
I don’t know how I could even start to heal without art. It truly does heal.
Remembering you during this difficult time. May the memory of your friend continue to find it’s way into your art and bring joy and passion in the future. Love to you Carolyn.
Appreciate your kind words Claudia!
I am so sorry about losing your friend Carolyn. I too lost a very old and dear friend way before his time and I too used art to get my sadness out. I did feel him near me at that time which really helped in the healing process. As they say, “time will heal” and as we say “art will also help heal the process”. My heart goes out to you.
Life without art would be so much more painful Susan and the only way I can even begin to process things that defy reason and logic. So sorry you too lost someone dear.
Carolyn, thank you so much for sharing the page. And I’m so sorry to hear about your friend. Hugs to you…
Thank you Consie!
Dear Carolyn, thank you for sharing your grief. I just spent three weeks with my Mother who was just diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. She has had a long life at 93, unlike your dear friend. But I was in tears, my first, reading your post. The stress has caused me some pinched nerves and some heart problems. I think because I tend to internalize instead of letting it out. Your post gave me some release, thank you. I hope to follow your example and get some art done.
No matter the age, no matter the reason, facing loss is so painful. Before I realized what art could do for me and how it could help me heal, I kept way way way too much inside. My heart goes out to you and your mother.
Carolyn, My heart goes out to you. Thank you for the honesty of your sharing. You have helped me deal with the loss of 2 good friends in as many days by reminding me that I can express my feelings in making art. Thank you.
Judith there is no logic to loss and so much pain. 2 friends so close together – so sorry. May art help you begin healing.
Carolyn, I am so sorry for your loss. I wish you comfort and joy in the memory of your dear friend. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.
I’m touched by your loss and your courage to share your private journal page. A true proof that art can heal, just as time can. Altough I’m not sure whether you heal completely after such a loss, time takes away the raw edges I believe but the loss is still there, I’ve lost my youngest brother (only 27 at the time) almost 3 years ago and although we need to move on, sometimes the missing is immense. I too turn too art then.
Carolyn, your spread is healing, love all your layers and love your process, thanks for sharing it with us 🙂
Thank you for sharing! How powerful is the love of a friend, even when they are not with us anymore! I cried. And I needed to… thank you.
Sorry for the loss of your friend. Again, even through grief, you are inspiring. Thank you for sharing your amazing talent with all of us.
Thank you so much for sharing this post, you have no idea how much it has helped me , having also suffered a great loss recently.
A very beautiful and touching page, thank you for sharing such a personal page. Sending you a huge xxx
Carolyn, I am so sorry for the loss of your dear friend. Thank you for sharing such a deeply personal page and it’s process. I hope your art continues to bring you solace and surround you with the love of your friend.
Lovely and big hugs. Sometimes it is so hard to remember. xox
This is so beautiful Carolyn! Thank you for sharing, and I’m so sorry for your loss… I hope you’ve been able to find peace as well.
I’d like to do some of these pages myself, but I’m never quite sure how to get it out. Appreciate you opening up and inspiring us!
A beautiful memorial piece, Carolyn! Bravo!
Thank you for sharing, Carolyn. Its a beautiful page and poignant too. So sorry to hear of the loss of your dear friend. Art does help us heal. Bless you, much grace to you.
I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. Thank you for sharing a step in your
healing process with us. It is so wonderful to have art as a way to express our feeling.
You never know the impact words can have. In tears here. Thank you.
Carolyn, my tears are shared for your loss as my heart and prayers are with you. I’m so glad you are able to find comfort in your art, honey.
Carolyn, sending you love and light during your time of sorrow. I appreciate your lesson for us all. Your love and youness mean so much. Blessings to you
It’s a beautiful page! I am sorry to read about the loss of your dear friend, but happy that your art comforted you today.
Beautiful. I’m so sorry for your loss, Carolyn, and so glad you found some peace in your art.
So Sorry to hear of your loss. Your page is very inspiring and I hope that your friend continues to inspire and guide you.
Thank you for sharing your page. I’m so sorry for your loss. Sending you a hug.
Beautiful words and I know she is watching down on you smiling <3
What a beautiful tribute to your friend! Thank you for sharing it with us.
I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. So glad you shared.
That was great, thanks for sharing!
Wishing you God’s peace and healing.
So sorry about your loss. Art really does help work through the grief…it’s still helping me deal with the unexpected loss of my sister a year ago…
Absolutely beautiful, Carolyn. Thank you so much for sharing.
What a beautiful tribute to your friend, and to the love you felt and feel for her. Thank you for sharing this.
I am so sorry for your loss. What a truly beautiful path towards healing. Thank you so much for sharing.