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Inner Child 2012 Created: 17/2/2012 Artist: Selina Shapland

Inner Child 2012
Created: 17/2/2012
Artist: Selina Shapland

In 2012 I created the above mandala on white acid free paper and colour ink pens and some watercolour pencils.  It took hours but I did not notice the time passing as I was totally involved in the intricate detail of what I was creating.

When I was a child, I dreamed of becoming an artist and expressing my creativity.  As I grew up, I somehow began to believe that I could not draw or have my dreams fulfilled.  When I was a teenager I had an experience in art class with some young guys who said I was boring when I gave a speech about a famous artist, whom I had thoroughly enjoyed researching.

It was at that point that I decided I was not an artist and that I should give up.  I did give up art until I was 24 years old.  As I turned 25, I decided that it was time to go back to my childhood dreams and begin to make them come to fruition.  I decided that I could become an artist if that is what my heart truly desired and it did.

So, I went to the library and began to borrow books and videos created by active artists and I applied myself to learn to draw.  I read the book Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain and after a bit of encouragement from my wonderful friends who all pitched in to buy me my first acrylic paints set, I started to put brush to canvass.

As time went by, my dream of becoming a practicing artist grew inside me like a seed that had been planted in fertile soil.  I began to grow in my artistic and creative expression and even though I was not very good, I kept on trying.  I was proud of my art, even the crappy pieces because they were mine and they represented a journey of my personal and emotional creative development.

I’ve been drawing, painting and creating all sorts of fun arty-farty stuff since I was 25 and I have indulged my inner child.

Essentially, I have healed myself and nursed myself through some emotionally traumatic life experiences with the help of my art work.  I can’t not do art. It is who I am now and it is difficult to go too long without access to something that allows me to express my creativity in the world.

The Inner Child art mandala sold for $70 AUD at the Heart Art 2012 Silent Charity Auction and that money was donated to kids in need.  I am proud to that this piece of work went to someone who appreciates my work and I am grateful that I was chosen to exhibit in the show back then.  I’m not sure if the charity runs the show anymore but it was a great experience for me, especially as so many of my friends came along and supported me and the cause to.

I am a very fortunate woman and artist.

So, if you have creativity sitting inside your heart and soul, don’t hide it from the world, let it out to see the sun and the moon.  Give yourself permission to paint, draw, write, knit, sew, crochet or do whatever it is that your inner voice says is creatively right for you.

And don’t judge your work.  Allow yourself to learn with out your inner critic taking a hack and slash at attack at you.  That is for much later in the creative journey and art development.  Do not allow yourself to fall prey to the left brain’s need to categorise what you draw or create.  Just allow and you might be surprised to see the beauty that flows from your soul into the world.

What you do is needed and will be valued by people, even if those closest to you do not have the eyes to see and appreciate the precious creative gift you have given to the world.