Sometimes words aren’t enough. As a writer with a mental illness, I know this truth well. It is frustrating trying to shrink my vague feelings into words. How many times can I describe depression as a deep dark hole? How many times can I refer to my anxiety as pins and needles? Even those words are cheap and don’t do my feelings justice. Art helps us connect with other people, especially writing. Reading books is one of the best ways to develop empathy for other people. But what is a writer to do when words aren’t enough?
Visual art allows us to express our unique experiences in a way that goes beyond words. That’s one of the reasons why visual art is so important. It captures what’s beyond words, transforming ethereal ideas and theories into colors and shapes. Being able to capture a feeling on paper is not easy, but once an artist is able to do it, the final product can be profound.
These six artists used art to express how it feels to live with a mental illness:
1. Edward Honaker took a series of self-portraits to portray his battle with depression and anxiety.
2. John William Keedy’s photo series conveys his personal battle with anxiety.
3. This photo by Victoria Krundysheva’s
is part of a series that depicts depression.
4. Christain Hopkin’s photos are about his life with depression and another mood disorder.
5. Tsoku Maela takes self-portraits to fight mental illness stigma, especially within black communities.
6. Christian Sampson’s photos express the difficulties of multiple mental disorders. This photo, in particular, is about addiction.
About The Author:
August Blair is the writer behind Writers With Mental Illness. She is a freelance writer, blogger, and student. She is passionate about psychology and writing. She studies at The University of North Georgia. Connect with her on Twitter and Instagram.