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Priming The Canvas

Updated: May 29

"As soon as you commit to growth and change, you will be tested!! Be ready!" ~ Tony Gaskins

The practice of creating art has definitely played a huge role in my life. When I began painting regularly in grad school, it was not with the intention to make gallery worthy paintings. And I honestly never feel that will be my mission. My art is meant to be fun, colorful, messy, and imperfect. I started painting initially to help myself with the stress of keeping up with graduate school. As I continued to create art, I found my own style, I was challenged to grow creatively, and learned to be patient with the process.

The process of making art has taught me to step out of my comfort zone by trying new techniques and taking risks in my art. There are times I feel my art flows, and other days I feel stuck and don't know how to start. On those difficult days, what I've learned is that I am dealing with self doubt. And those are the days that I need to make art more than ever! The more I push through on those days to create art, the better I feel in the end, because I know I have pushed myself also out of my comfort zone. That comfort zone often lies in some kind of repetitive pattern of folding when things get difficult. When we fold and give into self doubt or get scared of change we also get stuck. There is no growth happening in a bubble, where you continue in the safety of repeating old patterns in the hopes of getting new results.

As you can see, I am not only talking about creativity here, I am also talking about life and self-growth. Taking risks and stepping out into the unknown through art has also influenced me in my life. When you are open to change, you embrace growth. The reward is often exponential! Once that door is open, brace yourself because life has ways of throwing obstacles your way to teach you to continue to level up and grow! We may fight to keep things the same and familiar, but life always brings on new challenges and experiences. It is a normal reaction to feel intimidation and self doubt! The key is to not let it stop you in your tracks.

The more change you invite into your life, the more you learn to adjust and are able to face adversity and the unknown. So why am I bringing this up? I bring up this point because my self growth started with picking up a paint brush and this act lead to learning to believe in myself and the power of my own unique creativity. When I embraced my own creative power, I grew in many ways. That same creative energy is now at play. I am totally stepping out of my comfort zone once again by creating this blog and social media platforms.

Self growth can take many forms in our lives. My creativity is what has helped me grow. And I intend to continue using this power to help others by empowering them to also take ownership of their creativity; to be fearless in the pursuit of what makes them happy; and to embrace change and the unknown. I believe that we never truly stop learning. And there will always be room for self improvement and growth. I invite you to step into your own power! Believe in yourself and everything you bring into this world. You cannot be duplicated, your energy and gifts are unique to this world!

What do you often do to help yourself push through self doubt?

What do you think you could achieve in your life if you fully embraced your own power?

The Primed Canvas is now prepped and ready! Are you ready?!

With Love,


**Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be clinical advice and/or treatment. The content on this blog is meant for educational purposes and to create self awareness of mental health/ art therapy related topics. This information is by no means a substitute for therapy.**

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© 2019-2020 The Primed Canvas: Art Therapy Blog

Lauren Graham, LPC, NCC, LCDC, ATR-P

Houston, TX

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