Advanced Watercolor: Body of Work, Part 2

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Advanced Watercolor: Body of Work, Part 1

For my second project in Advanced Watercolor class, I had a very strong image in my mind of what I wanted to do conceptually, and what I wanted the composition to be like. It was my intention to depict the act of self-mutilation as a means of armor. In my personal experience, self-harm was my coping mechanism for when my emotions were too intense for me to handle. The act was a way of protecting myself from myself, and it was an act of control. It was my self-comfort, as destructive as it was. This is why I chose to depict the woman in my painting with armor. She is also looking straight at the viewer with a look of confidence, as if to say, "I've got this. I have control over the situation. I can save myself." Following is a couple paragraphs I wrote and shared with my class about the meaning behind this project,

This painting is about using self-mutilation as armor. The spikes on the inside of her neck piece indicate that the armor is not working to protect her, and this is also indicated by the blood that is dripping from inside the armor. There are a couple of wounds on the arms that indicate the self-harm. 
The muscle-like textures are a part of her armor and visibly have a hold. They belong to the representation of her negative self, whose face can be seen above her. The indication that the negative self and her are related, is that they both have one blue eye and one red eye. This was an accidental encounter from adding too much red to one eye, but it worked with what I am trying to convey. 
The tie-in to the previous painting in this body of work is symmetry and the use of overlapping shapes. In this case, it’s the faint circular lines around the face.
I would also like to note that while I have self-harmed in the past, I am no longer taking part in that very destructive habit. I have been going to therapy for two years now and it's helped a lot! I also think that due to the triggering nature of this post, I should include some resources, just in case.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - Their phone number is 1-800-273-8255.
International Association for Suicide Prevention
S.A.F.E. Alternatives - "Self abuse finally ends" is a website devoted to helping those who self-injure. Their phone number is 1-800-366-8288.
Depression & Bipolar Support Alliance - Their phone number is 1-800-826-3632.

If you're not in the mood to call a hotline or go to a website, and are still feeling like you're in a crisis, here are some various links to stuff to help get your mind off of self-harm.

Cute Cat Compilation Video 2014 - If you love cats, I highly recommend this.
Old Gregg from The Mighty Boosh - If you love weird humor, especially weird British humor, then you might just like this video of Old Gregg. Who is Old Gregg, you say? Grab yourself a boot-full of Old Bailey's and click the link to find out!
Bob Ross painting a Valley - Bob Ross videos always helped me calm down. Maybe it will help you!
Just Cute Animals - A website that is pretty self-explanatory.
"Tacky" by Weird Al music video - It's hard not to cheer up when listening to this song!

Lastly, if you need to, you can contact me at for a listening ear. Take care!


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