Expressing great anguish through artistic means can embody a deeply healing form of release.
Admittedly was in a state of perpetual agony while doing this one.
I’m not saying the level of pain to which I felt equivalates to when Prometheous’s liver was continuously devoured by eagles..
but it was just around matching Prometheous’s liver being continuously devoured by eagles.
And sometimes, it doesn’t matter who or what you are, you just need to cry it out.
After my father died about a month after a dear friend shot himself in the head, I had fallen apart, quite regularly contemplating running into oncoming traffic as a viable solution. I was staying in my martial arts temple (Shim Gum Do) in Boston, trying to quietly hide my pain away, but the founding head master knew, as if he could feel it too. As I tiptoed up the stairwell, pondering if today was the day I would leap in front of a vehicle, he spoke calmly, but firmly aloud from the kitchen below:
“Pain is good.”
Suddenly, everything fell into place.
I understood that pain can be a great teacher, if not one of the most quintessential experiences that can help grow a person beyond their perception of physical restraints.
This realization does not make it easier. It can be an incredibly difficult climb, and a jarring one at that; a winding road that does not always lead completely forward, and at moments can cause you to stagger back.
But, you keep going. Mistakes and setbacks may barrage your every step, but you keep going.
I learned that day that you cannot rely in waiting for someone to save you from your agony. You must pick up the pieces, and save yourself.
This does not mean that pain harbors the only path to come upon this discovery, for the choices we have within us may be as vast as the cosmos, but it is an effective way carry on through a calamitous, torturous turn of events.
I drew this on my trusty Mobile Studio Pro, Alfred. It was going to be an illustration for a novel written by a woman who turned out to be a closeted homophobe who dedicated an entire chapter of the book to entailing that being a lesbian was a mortal sin, a choice, and could be prayed away with the power of Christ.
I told her this message could hurt an entire demographic of people, and if the content was not removed, I would not grant permission for her to use any of my illustrations. Well, I never heard from her again, but hey, art came out of it. Can’t complain.
For future reference, yeah I won’t draw art for you if your content contains racist, sexist, or bigoted material that may treat another living sentient as subservient to yourself.
Don’t be a dick.
Thanks for lookin’.