Through the process of painting using a variety of techniques, people often generate a piece of art and a subsequent piece of writing that astounds them. They find their voice; they discover they are able to articulate thoughts, feelings, desires, and wishes through both their art and if one chooses, through writing. Whether it is a poem, a song, a short story, or beyond, the freedom is there to express oneself, due to creating the visuals first.
Participants observe me demonstrating the techniques to learn the process of making colorful papers using liquid watercolors and several pieces of materials to add texture. An array of models would be provided to show the participants what a completed project might look like. The samples show nature scenes, inspirational quotes and phrases, poetry, one-page memoirs and books. These samples show the limitlessness of the process, which often puts students at ease and encourages them to know that they can, in fact, see the process through to the end.
Students then begin by creating an assortment of textured papers to develop a distinctive and unique collage. In an atmosphere devoid of pressure, students find themselves relaxed in a quiet setting, with light background music.
Once textured paintings are dry, students assemble the pieces they’ve cut, and construct their collages to finalize their projects. Their art is set to dry and students either choose to make more collages, or move on to the writing piece that corresponds to their collage. For the writing component, the idea is that the visuals spark the writing in the person’s mind, and help them to think more abstractly to express what is inside them through words.
Benefits: Most people, who may wish to write creatively, only have the experience of writing in a school setting, which often produces somebody who “freezes” when asked to compose. Children and adults who would love to write, but feel that they don’t have that ‘talent’, find that they are, in fact, able to access the language for the writing portion of the project. The fear of failure is reduced due to the lack of restrictions and boundaries placed on their artistic expression.