Bi-Polar Creativity, Lost Reggae and Rasta memories

I had intended my blogs to be about my artwork but now finding myself in a deep depression I thought perhaps I could raise awareness also for bi-polar disorder.  I recently read an interesting article on the dopamine system and highly creative people which you might also find interesting if you are creative yourself and perhaps suffer from depression or other mental health problems.  

I’ve never really liked forums on depression because if you feel depressed there’s nothing worse than reading about how depressed everybody else feels and how awful the world is.  The best thing when feeling depressed is to surround yourself with happy, positive people.  Trouble is I do suffer from paranoia and think I’m then making them depressed as well.  It’s all quite ridiculous as is life in general, which can either seem humorous or depressing and confusing, depending on state of mind.  I admire those people, who are stable but then I wouldn’t change my mental state in fear of losing my artistic abilities.  




I really admire Stephen Fry.  So clever, honest and successful despite his bi-polar.  Well I’m off to see the psychiatrist tomorrow but in my depressive state wonder what on earth they can possibly do to help me.  I just have to have some faith I guess.  I suppose though without feeling the depths of depression you cannot experience those incredible highs that are at the other end of the spectrum.   

Something cheerful to end on.  I’m listening to some reggae at the moment that I thought I had lost forever.  I used to be a rasta, a white one.  I had a massive collection of reggae albums that my first husband stole from me.  I still had lots and lots of tapes from that era.  Late 80’s I guess.  I lived in Stamford Hill at the time and went to art college in Camberwell.  With Tottenham at one end of where I lived and Shoreditch, Dalston at the other end I was in my element, surrounded by Rastas  Even whilst at college my lunchtime trips to buy sandwiches would usually entail a sighting of a Rasta or 2.  I visited Blues and Reggae clubs regularly, often dodgy places but amazing music.  I would often be the only white person in the place along with my friend whom I would drag along.  Anyway, I found out the other day I could buy a cassette player to change my tapes into MP3s.  My first is playing right now.  Once I have all of them I may have something near to my record collection.  It’s going to take some time but will be great listening to all that old music one at a time.

I need to get on with some artwork.  I keep procrastinating at the moment, sleeping all over the place, no routine.  Don’t forget to check out my website and sign up to win a piece of my artwork.  I always get a buzz from seeing someone has taken an interest and entered the competition.  I don’t have many so far.  I would really appreciate it if you place an entry, you can always give it away if you don’t like it, or sell it perhaps 😀  It’s not going to cost you anything anyway and it will make my day.  Just read on the home page how to enter.   Thank you for reading and even more thanks if you enter my competition. 


About larainbriggs

I'm an artist and have been since I can remember. Being an artist is one thing that has remained constant. At 10 I received my first oil painting set and by the age of 14 I had my first piece of work in a local gallery window. I am not an artist by choice, art chose me but I am extremely happy that it did. It is my path and vocation and the right thing to do for me. As long as I am doing that then I am doing the right thing, there is no question about that for me. It's a spiritual experience that is difficult to explain but I am sure other artists will understand exactly what I am saying. Here is my artist's statement to explain what my art is about:- I am currently a practicing artist living in Dovercourt. I previously taught in London and was a self-employed supply teacher where I live now. I studied Fine Art at Camberwell, and at Goldsmiths in London for a Post Graduate certificate in education. I also studied for a BSc in Computer Aided Visualisation at the Anglia Polytechnic University and Art Therapy at the Institute for Art in Therapy and Education. Unable to work outside of the home due to disability both mental and physical, I now focus on my multi-disciplinary art practice full time. My work has been inspired by Carl Jung for a long time and exploring my unconscious for even longer. I work through painting, assemblage and installation, employing various strategies to access animus, the shadow, and my soul. Through creative expression, I attempt to externalise the inner reality of my psyche. My work acts as a mirror where I try to see my soul - the inner workings of my mind. It transcends persona and barriers to connect with my true self where I hope to reconcile internal conflicts and heal myself. It would be impossible to communicate these aspects of my psyche verbally. The work is full of symbolism and archetypes which I believe are viewed in turn by the viewer in an unconscious manner. I hope that this will also be as therapeutic for the audience as it is for myself. My work is healing, especially to those who have mental health issues. I invite others to have a glimpse of a mind that is often troubled, anxious and depressed and to find empathy and understanding for people who are suffering from mental illness. I hope to touch the soul of anyone viewing my work. Currently, my work is mostly abstract in style but just as I can see archetypal images and symbols within the abstracts that reflect my own soul I hope that the abstract will act as a mirror to the viewer where they will see relevant images that relate to their own psyche. I am diagnosed with bipolar disorder and BPD(Borderline personality disorder) sometimes known as emotional intensity disorder. I believe this latter diagnosis has developed through a number of traumas occurring through my life. I wish to raise awareness of mental illness through my work and hope to one day be able to show to many more people where I will have a forum to discuss the difficulties that these problems bring. View all posts by larainbriggs

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