Here is a painting I made over the 2018 Winter Holidays. I made it as to represent my New Year's Resolution. I am a chronic depressive. While I am generally fine most of the time, I sometimes have bouts of extreme darkness. In my mind, I often rationalize this darkness as a prison or as if I were shackled. I feel locked away. The most terrifying part is that I am unsure if I am imprisoned to avoid harm happening to me or the world outside. I am not really good with words. So representing this vision as a painting was the next best thing I could do to show it.
As this project was mostly a pet project for my own leisure, I unfortunately did not document the process as thoroughly. Here is a photo I took as I started, revealing my technique a little bit. I mostly rely on stencils to create shapes I desire.
This is another photo that showcases how I attain precise shapes. In this picture in particular, I designed a phrase that I would then cut out with an x-acto.
My final production. Taking roughly 3 hours to complete, I crafted this painting during the 2018 Winter holidays. This artwork was not truly supposed to be shown to the public as it was meant to be a representation of my New Year's resolution. I am a chronic depressive. I have struggled with this condition for almost a decade now. But in particular, 2017 and 2018 felt like the actual worse years of my life, filled with moments of perpetual darkness and solitude. I was a fool as I only truly sought help at the beginning of 2018. Before that, I thought I was strong enough to withstand it. I was wrong. Deep inside, I did not believe that. I was simply scared of being a burden on my close ones. I sought help only after my social and professional lives were almost ruined in Fall 2017 as I struggled the most so far. I was normally able to stand it as I would define myself as a high-functioning depressive: someone that is still able to hold a somewhat normal life. This Fall semester proved me wrong. Only after I had alienized some friends and failed most of my courses that semester did I finally reach out. While the beginning of 2018 was painful as well, the year revealed itself to be the one in which, I believe, I had matured emotionally the most. As the year transitioned to 2019, I decided to hold a New Year's resolution for the first time in my life, a concept I had found ridiculous all years beforehand. When I am suffering, I stay sane by rationalizing my condition and picturing it as a prison or as me being shackled. In this representation, the prisoner would be me. The hand represents the world outside trying to help me. The most essential element, in my opinion, would be the red shackles, made by common lies that I kept telling myself: "I am fine, I am normal, I do not need help..." Well here is my resolution for 2019: break this shackles that hold me. Or at least, loosen the grip they hold on me.