Original Artwork By Michael Grealy ( Founder / Owner- iNVISeDGE )
Written- 3rd October, 2021- for the first piece of artwork I shared in iNVISeDGE- the piece about not hoping for an outcome.
Because of ongoing mental-health issues, during my most recent hospital admission in October 2020, hospital staff suggested I start doing my own artwork instead of just representing everyone else’s.
The funny thing is I have never considered myself an artist because I’m not very good at drawing or painting. (I got a B for art at high school even though it was the main subject I tried really hard at. It’s “interesting” how high school seems to “pigeon-hole” us for a good part of our lives.) I am a writer, first and foremost but I don’t consider writing an art. Most of my “best writing” is done at about 2 o’clock in the morning. I “get woken up” in the middle of the night and there’s something that stops me from going back to sleep until I write what’s in my head. Virtually all the “creative writing” that has ever come out of me, has been done in the middle of the night when I should be asleep (thousands of pages have been born this way). Writing sometimes just seems to gush out of me like a torrent (when it’s supposed to). There have been some nights I’ve written 20 pages in about 3 hours. In the middle of the night it often just falls out of me with no effort on my part at all. So much so that I don’t really consider any of “my” writing, mine. My fingers dance across the keyboard and eventually I just stop, collapse back in bed and go back to sleep. (Sometimes I barely even remember “I was woken up in the middle of the night” and did some more of “this strange creative writing”.)
I digress… I never was creative at all. I struggled for a long time to draw or paint creatively. This is the first piece of art I feel comfortable sharing with the world / iNVISeDGE customers. I think I like the piece of writing that accompanies this more than the piece of artwork itself. (“Instead of hoping for an outcome pray for the Highest Good for all.”) I seem to have a way with words … or so people keep telling me. This written caption took several weeks to evolve. Every word had to be “just right” before I was ready to sit down and commit to doing this piece of art. (AGAIN, this piece of writing was written for the FIRST piece of artwork I shared on my website- the one about not hoping for an outcome.)
I don’t have any goals in life. I never plan anything and don’t think I ever will. I just “go with the flow”…
But after my most recent hospital admission (at a large public hospital in the outer Brisbane suburbs), I set a goal to do one piece of artwork every week. (Mainly because the hospital staff said I have talent as a drawer and painter.) I’m not sure I agree but I try hard at everything I commit myself to. After this last hospital stay in October 2020, I made a decision (after I stopped wanting to kill myself every second of every day) to create a piece of artwork each week with felt pens, a pencil and a biro as the only media. I’ve done about 25 pieces of art now. This is the first one I really like so I’ve decided to share it with my iNVISeDGE “family” and friends.
Soon after posting this listing, someone asked me, “why just felt pens, a pencil and a biro?” This idea was born out of procrastination. I kept coming up with excuses for not committing myself to this one piece of artwork. The home I was living in was too small to set up any type of art-space, I didn’t have space to store any art materials or the money to buy them either. (There are so many things I’d like to do with iNVISeDGE and they all require money and time- two precious commodities I never seem to have enough of.) One day in February of 2021 I was shopping at Coles and I ambled up the aisle with stationery in it (which I never do). I saw a pack of 20 felt pens and I think they were less than $10. I found myself throwing them in my shopping basket and then after a few more steps I actually put them back on the shelf (!) … Then later went back and got them again. I love my felt pens now (they are one of my most prized possessions) and I find myself looking forward to doing my next piece of artwork. It’s therapeutic (this is obviously the main reason the nurses in the mental hospital encouraged me to take up doing it).
UPDATE – 15 November 2021
I have now added a “White-Out” pen (correction fluid pen) to the media I’m using for this first series of “works”. The “White-Out” pen cost me $3 from Officeworks (… I didn’t have to save up for it ! lol) and it it’s about the same size as a marker pen (so very easy for me to carry around and store). I have a habit of “overdoing” artwork (only coz I’m trying so hard for it to be good). To help me surrender this notion that nothing I ever do is good enough, I’m continuing with the parameters I set from the get-go (with this first series of works). HALF an A4 page of SCRAP paper. Felt pens. Biro. Pencil. And now a “White-Out pen.
The White-Out pen is a very strategic choice. I want to move onto painting on canvases but I’m not ready for that quite yet. I want to continue with the parameters I initially set for myself for this series because these parameters will help me grow as a person and as an “artist”. And I still use the word, artist, very loosely on myself. I don’t consider myself an artist because I’m still learning HOW TO go with the flow of life completely, I’m still learning how NOT to set goals and NOT want (or need) to be perfect at anything.
These artworks look quite primitive and child-like. They are meant to! I want them to be symbolic. Children draw and paint with symbols all the time. (Cave people did too!) I am using one HALF AN A4 PAGE of SCRAP PAPER (that “rule” did NOT come from any plan I made so I’m sticking with it!). It is not a lot of space for me to communicate with. This FORCES ME to be creatives, symbolic … and colourful.
All symbols are creative- all symbols including the letters of our written language are creative. They are a creative means by which humans developed to convey themselves to other humans (and be understood by others). Symbols (and words) merely point us to the Truth and that is exactly what I want to achieve with this series of art.
I want to inspire others (first and foremost) and I want to do this in a way that is neither “good nor bad”. I want people to look at my artwork and say, “I could do that”. THAT is my main goal here! I want to encourage others to be creative. It is all too easy to be destructive with others AND for some of us (be destructive with OURSELVES). Be kind to yourself as well as others and if you find that hard, CREATE. Because creation is what separates us from other animals. ALL animals have the capacity to be kind and compassionate. We see it in dogs all the time but I also see it in ants. I watched an ant yesterday haul a dead “friend” FOUR TIMES it’s size on it’s own back! For what reason I don’t know. I suppose it was to give his friend a proper “burial”. Though, us humans think animals with NO brain have NO compassion. I don’t think that’s true. That is why I know for sure that COMPASSION DOES NOT COME FROM THE BRAIN. COMPASSION COMES FROM LEARNING HOW TO CREATE INSTEAD OF HOW TO DESTROY.
I look forward to sharing more pieces of my artwork in iNVISeDGE in the future. Thank you to anyone who read this far and have a great day. :+)
Michael Grealy (3 October 2021) then revised 4 October 2021 and now (more recently 15 November 2021).