The Highs and Lows of Being an Artist

I’ve seen versions of the following statement and agree with the point in makes about being an artist.

‘If you ask yourself why artists (djs,singers,dancers,musicians, photographers, painters or anyone who falls under the artist category) charge “so much” (?) for performances… We don’t get paid vacation, we don’t get paid sick days, we don’t get bonuses for outstanding performances nor for Christmas.

My Paints!!!!

We don’t have insurance plans nor do we qualify for unemployment. We sacrifice our family on special days so that we can bring happiness to others. Illness or personal affairs are not excuses for a bad performance. Next time you ask, remember that artists are artists because of the love of music & art but that love doesn’t pay debts. Happy Artists Day!! Re-post if you’re an Artist.’

This week I’ve been active making use of my Youtube account documenting me painting in front of the camera. I’ve also created a video ‘artist’s statement’ for those of you who want to know a little bit more about my attitude to art and what I enjoy about painting.  I hope you enjoy it and please feel free to leave your comments on the link  if you have any.

Wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous week ahead!

Allison Brooks: The Use of Colour Therapy

After following my blog, researcher Allison Brooks volunteered to write a short article on the use of colour therapy. From personal experience, I know this has become a popular subject for medical professionals, visual artists and architects involved in health building design. Allison went to the University of Mississippi and earned a degree in Biomedical Anthropology. She is currently studying in this field to finish her ethnography on the effects of bio medicalization on Bolivian cultures. I thank her for her contribution. Her unedited guest blog is as follows:

Allison Brooks

How Color Therapy has and continues to offer beneficial changes

Color is all around us, but is often overlooked. It gives new life to things, like a field of flowers or that old antique table. Colors can change a mood, a house, and even character, and now in the medical realm. Many cherish fine colors for their aesthetic qualities, but not many look into it any deeper than that.

For example, the colors and furniture placement of a room are easy things to overlook. Not many people understand that the color of room or object can be more than just appealing to the eye; but when one really thinks about the use of color, it becomes apparent that certain colors are picked to stimulate certain senses. This is known as color therapy, and is being utilized in healing facilities and homes all around the world.

This in not a new concept; color is everywhere and subconsciously affects a person’s emotions, health, and energy. A man by the name of Faber Birren noticed this natural gift and emotional stir, and soon became the pioneer in color prescription. Faber Birren, was a very practical man and noticed how the use of color could inhibit certain actions, healing practices, or emotions. Birren changed how many companies and human lives operated.  One of his greatest accomplishments was his work with the U.S. Armed services to help alleviate work-place accidents. He established the current safety color code of the military and made different uniforms for certain personnel on Navy ships, resulting in a dramatic drop in accidents. This simple, but impacting change resulted in the drop of accidents by 28%.

Faber Birren’s legacy lives on, still today. From the terror-alert color scheme to pollen amounts, color codes are used everywhere. It might seem tricky at first to use the concepts of color therapy, but it is easy to change the mood and energy of a living space, just by using color.  For example, the use of earthy and warm tones is seen in many medical offices and waiting rooms. I encountered my first welcoming waiting room at a local DC dentist office, when I had an oral emergency while on vacation. The hygienists claimed that they saw a difference in the attitude of patients since the color change.

Colorado Hospital

In many case studies, the effects of color and patient acceptance to treatment have been notable. Currently, there are more studies being conducted to see what colors better suit certain diagnoses. The Children’s Hospital of Colorado has implanted the use of natural lightening and art in their rooms to promote healing and make a welcoming environment. Pictures of natural landscapes decorate the hallways and rooms because research “shows that looking at art based on nature helps reduce stress. Images such as water, trees and outdoor spaces reduce anxiety and pain.  And studies show that providing interactive opportunities for kids reduces their stress and anxiety. It is with this knowledge that our hospital uses are to bring the outdoors inside.”

This is why the use of color therapy is becoming popular in offices alike. Doctors and patients are seeing a difference in attitude and recovery time with the use certain colors. Since an unfavorable prognosis, like pancreatic cancer or mesothelioma cancer, can lead to a stressful situation, even the smallest of change can help ease the mind.

For further information please contact Allison on

Useful weblinks

2012 – New Horizons

Happy New Year!  I wish you all a healthy and enjoyable 2012 that rewards you with all you desire. Hopefully your resolution will be kept even if it’s the annual decision to stop smoking, drinking, dieting or just keeping the peace with difficult acquaintances. Do your best to see it through to the end. If 2012 presents an opportunity to dramatically change your life for the better, just take advantage of it no matter the odds. Keep your eyes on your prize, allowing all you love and treasure to be the fuel that moves you towards it!

This year presents further opportunity for me to exhibit my paintings. Equally, I hope to share the development of projects and exhibitions with you via my blog and other mediums. If you haven’t already, I invite you to join me on Facebook or Twitter.I attach a video of my last painting of 2011 entitled ‘Let’s Jam.’ This acrylic painting may be included in my next exhibition in New York this March. More info to come! I hope you enjoy it!