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  • Writer's pictureAnjum Madan


When I was growing up, Art was about big paintings, hung on walls – in homes or, if you are really famous, in galleries. It was not something that most people could do – to make a living doing. So, I set my mind on doing something else creative. In fact, when it came to choosing my high school, I chose the one with the stronger art program.

Unfortunately, what I did not account for was an art teacher who was especially critical of my work. He had certain students that he particularly favoured, and others that he did not. At an otherwise vulnerable time in my life, those critiques hit especially hard.

I did stick to my guns and go on to Art College. I joined the Interior Design and Architecture program and then ended up transferring to the Digital 3D Design program. I got as far away from drawing and painting any more.

After nearly 2 decades, when I started to face all the pain I had felt and take steps towards healing, I realized that I had to get back to art. Even thought I had not totally given up on being creative (I had let it show in making beaded jewellery, scrapbooking, cross stitch, and writing) true “art” is something I had totally shied away from. After all, according to Georges Braque, “Art is a wound turned into light.”

I started to paint simple backgrounds on which to hand letter quotes. I gave myself grace to fall. That is huge. I am not striving for any kind of perfection. Sure, there have been a few that I have ripped up. But for the most part, I have been working my way through the quotes. A friend gave me a 2020 desk calendar and so I have the goal to get all 366 quotes done. I have done about 70 of them so far and can already see some progress in the painting and in the way I a writing the quotes. I can see that there is less inhibition in the more recent pieces.

If you would like to check them out, head click on the “Etsy Shop” tab and see the progress I have made.

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