Maureen

I’ve looked after myself since I was 9 years old. When I say that, I didn’t really, but people behind me encouraged me to be independent. So I’ve always had to make my own decisions. So I said to my daughter, “the car is mine, I can do what I want with it”.

He knew, and he said “you’ve got Parkinson’s disease”. It was a relief to know, because when you put a name to it, it makes sense.

I am scared about the future. There is not much of it. 82 – I didn’t think I’d live this long. Thoughts my brothers would have killed me by now! There is more memories behind which are excellent. When I go to bed at night, I sleep solid for hours and I sometimes have some lovely dreams despite the drugs I am on. Might be the drugs that are causing them! I am mad if I wake up at the wrong time.

I’ll just go sit on a mountain in Tibet. Just watching the sunset and the sunrise. The people in Tibet usually look after the elderly.

Nathan

Aspiring broadcaster, musician, media person. Hopefully in some way or other making some sort of difference to people that I identify with, mainly one or two minorities that I belong to.

I had a difficult time at school. I left at the age of 14 where I was home schooled until college. The main reason for struggling was various mental health issues in the past, mainly depression and anxiety. Earlier on in my life it would have been social and communication issues. I guess I’ve gotten over it through broadcasting really.

I guess I don’t feel as though I am performing as well as I should in what I am doing. Personally I feel quite isolated and lonely, because I just don’t really identify with many people with my age group. Sometimes I might go for a night out, but I don’t do it religiously like these people my age do. I guess I am just a lonely soul, but there we go.

There is a tiny little umbrella above my head and a big rainstorm that completely dwarfs the umbrellas size, which I think is very much apt for my situation in general. I am quite a rational thinker, but thought it was quite ironic to spell ‘rationale’ wrong intentionally. The white stuff around the musical instrument is white noise. In my line of work, mainly, I have to deal with a lot of white noise. I’ve noticed that if there is a group around your subject interest, invariably there ends up being some kind of internal conflict – to me that’s all the white noise. The brown stuff on the bottom is where my worst thoughts usually are. At 2 points in the last 3 years I have an existential crisis where I was just worried about the whole big picture of the world and the universe. The little pint areas relate to my mismanaged and hopeless romanticism which is going on at the moment. The yellow wall is my defense area, if people are rude about me I am usually mentally strong enough to block it off. But sometimes the wall can drop away a little bit, where somedays I can get triggered into depression by almost anything actually. The blocks at the bottom resemble all of the workload I have at the moment, brick by brick and it’s completely disorganized to the point where a task on my to-do list is to write a to-do list. The number 1 represents the position Id like to be in my field, and the number 10 is how I usually feel.

Hardly anyone in my project knows about my sexuality, but in doing that you sort of need to tell a white lie when speaking about girls. I want to get a dialogue going, because people in this country are too inwards. I don’t think people talk about many issues. My documentary will cover mental health, sexuality, lack of opportunities in the world in general.

Sharel

I feel as if I am a strong person mentally, cause I’ve been through a lot. My home was hit by a category 5 hurricane, the strongest ever recorded. It destroyed our home. We had no choice but to relocate.

I miss the warm weather and the beaches, but being here gives me a lot of opportunities in the entertainment world.

Some things will always be on my mind, like the hurricane Irma. My career is on there, but I know it will get better so it can change.

I wish I had more to help people in need. When I see the homeless people here I get really sad.

Georgia

When I was 18, I visited Morocco. I became lost in a world within Islam that encourages the sight and communication with spirits. The fairies of my adulthood. As I delved deeper into the knowledge that surrounds these beings that exist on the fringes of our own existence, I found other people, like me, in this community, had seen, experienced, and believed in them. The un-truth of the matter solidified and became a reality.

I was met in the UK with the cold, harsh and abrasive sting of Western enlightenment rationalization, the doctrine of my parents and other atheists that states “all we touch and all we see is all that life can ever be”. But what of those of us who could access more than the visible, tangible reality? Who is to say that we are mentally ill?

If you have ever loved, been loved, felt fear, felt joy, felt that you were meant to meet another person, or felt a sunset that fills your soul with the essence of what is means to be alive, then you know that these are powerful emotions, ones that make us feel alive and a part of the universe.

Kingsley

My portrait is about love, about women, relationships. It’s a very erotic piece.

It represents a woman’s vagina, and sex, and fluids flying everywhere. There is a shape of two people kissing with tongues. There is the music in there as well. For me that’s my personality – music and love.

I am lucky to still be alive, basically. Other people who have gotten an illness have perished

Matt

Shamans revere schizophrenics because they can bridge both worlds
It helps us reach the depths of emotions in HD as the tangible unfurls
Most of us have an overblown third eye and a underdeveloped root
Happier when even erratic patterns are grounded making it compute

To view this illusion as a lesson bound dream, everything is in balance
An omnipresent scaling of everything and nothingness, knowing joyance
We’re the entire ocean in one drop, jungle of mirrors reflecting your own self
Unconditional love in light and dark, selfish ego accomplishments not wealth

Extract from “Doma’s piece” – by Matt

Clair

From an early age I wanted to be someone else. I guess I struggled being me. I became untrue to myself.

Looking at the portrait put me into touch with how I really look. I feel like I have woken up and I am suddenly 48.

There is something about women that is very empowering and I am glad that I am a woman. My drinking and drug taking took me to a place where it was mainly men.

It’s like layers to an onion. I feel more ashamed to have depression than saying I am an addict. I can deal with people thinking alcoholics have no will power. But depression is so not understood. It’s not like you feel a bit down. It’s a dark hole. People just think you are putting on or trying to get out of something. All I can hear in my head is “pull yourself together”.

It’s all fear based. When you don’t understand something, you fear it. That’s what causes prejudice. I’d say hang out with someone before you start judging.

Esther

I am quite a bright, colourful person. I try to be enthusiastic and funny. I don’t know if I am actually funny, but I do try.

I’m quite an expressive person, not very neat, not much of a perfectionist. It’s quite messy and scribbly. But I know that in the privacy of my own brain there is a lot more going on. I am quite private with my emotions, that’s why there is a big, ugly circle in the middle of my brain. There is a lot of stuff going on in there that people don’t know about which I wanted to represent.

It’s my own struggle and something I have always dealt with, but it also forms a lot of my outward personality. So there is a darkness, but it helps me to be more colourful and cheerful.

I’ve always pulled through on my own, or other people have helped me without knowing that they did. I don’t see the need to burden others with it if I don’t have to.

Michael

I can see myself in her, that’s why I knew she was going to screw up university. When you start seeing your own mistakes in your children you get a bit worried. I think there is too much pressure on people that they have to go, when it’s not for everybody anyway.

They say that people with Bipolar are more creative, but I think a lot of people pretend they are because it sounds cool or something. If I had a choice, I would not have it. I don’t see it as the best thing that has ever happened to me.

It’s one of those things you have to come to terms with. I found out as much as I could about it, which meant I could control it better. With the artwork and the music it kind of suits my personality. Being a bit up and down mood wise means I don’t really suit a 9-5 job anyways. I run all the time which gets rid of all excess energy.

I was doing illustration and literature simultaneously at university, and it was like all the work was keeping me going. The way it works is things start whizzing around your head very fast, you start getting lots of ideas and making connections. It’s great when there is a peak to it, but not if it goes further and you are making connection when there is no connection there.

You see on telly people saying “don’t come off medication it’s the worst thing you can do”, but I have more of less come off it. I just have some that I take when, and if, I need it.

I like facebook because I empty out my head. Most of the time I am talking to myself, but on facebook I actually get answers to my thoughts.

Kristel

The pressure that my parents are paying for me to be here is always on my mind. I always worried about money and if they cannot pay, what would I do?

I am a quiet person inside. I like to feel loved and to love people. I think a lot. People always try to fit in everything. The clock represents that I am usually worried about timing and getting too old to do some things. The make up shows how you want people to look at you

Hoisun

I had depression for a few years before. It’s not something that I expected, as it suddenly hit me. One day I just started to feel very tired and wanted to stay in bed for the whole day. And then it lasted for like 2 years. Most people take mental health for granted. Only them you get sick or some life events hit you then you will really what it means.

When I am depressed I don’t even draw. I lost all interest to do things. In total it took me about 5 years to come out of it.

I tried to put a mask in front of my face, but I did not want anything realistic. I am a receptionist and I tent to get a lot of sales calls, like 5 or 6 each day. Even though I am annoyed at them, I need to pretend to be nice and wearing a mask.

I stayed in the dark for so long, that when I come out of it I try to be coloful. I never know when the depression will come back to hit me

Minara

Thinking about my children, what will happen when they grow up? Will my housing situation affect them?

My daughter has mental health problems and I don’t know what do with her. She doesn’t do anything, she has dropped out of school. I tried so hard to get her somewhere. But now that she is almost 18 it seems there is no help for her.

She had post-traumatic stress disorder due to the domestic violence in our home. She observed it since she was little. It gets to my head.

I think flowers are beautiful

Jasmine

I like blue. Blue for me is a color that’s is the most beautiful color. It’s quite sad, but it’s a beautiful sadness. Like the sea and the sky, the two things that you can’t see the end of. They are so vast.

I am everything that has been given to me. I am molded out of my circumstances. Things don’t really belong to me. My brain does not belong to me, my body does not belong to me. The snow falling outside is not mine to feel, it is the skies.

I’ve realized I am quite a conflicting person, which I tried to reflect with the black and white in the drawing. It’s like there are two very different people within me, but I am as much one as I am the other. One part of me wanting to be free and detached and to not exist really; to be invisible in the world and free from responsibility, to travel and disappear. The other half wants stability with relationships and future.

I think I put too much pressure on myself, I don’t think it’s that deep.

Back to First Page

Close Menu