My new series of etchings is titled Seven Stages. It is the most personal work I have done to date. It is about the stages, or depression, that I went through when my dad unexpectedly died. I have 8 sets of prints; each one different as they have been hand painted with watercolour. I intend to donate 10% of the profit I make of the sale of these to a charity/crisis phone line that I volunteered at as a Telephone Counsellor. They are called The Samaritans and are based in Subiaco, Perth.
One set of etchings is being exhibited at the upcoming Printmakers of W.A Exhibition:
Where – Atwell Gallery, Cnr Canning Hyw and North Lake Rd.
When – Fri 27th July – Sun 5th Aug. 10-5pm..
If you are interested in buying a set, please contact me directly on my facebook page.
My experience at The Samaritans as a Telephone Counsellor was eye opening. I learnt that many people are going through what I went through and it is something that I still battle with at times. A number of my friends have been affected by the death of a loved one or bouts of depression. It is a common malady facing a lot of people, but one that we rarely talk about because of the taboo placed on being seen as ‘feeling blue’; so I thought I would be honest and talk about my ‘Seven Stages’ through my artwork…
Stage 1. Absence – Self Explanatory
Stage 2. Grief – Self Explanatory
Stage 3. Anger – this used to be my fall back way of dealing with things. (No longer so – mostly.)
Stage 4. Chaos – Nothing made sense. It still doesn’t at times.
Stage 5. Order – life got a bit more stable day by day, year by year.
Stage 6. Calm – I have far more of this in my life now!
Stage 7. Complete – is it/or am I?
Kubler Ross’s Five Stages of Grief Model which outlines Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance as the main stages people go through when faced with death and dying. The application of these stages have now been extended to a wider category of life events; at work I have seen it being applied to people receiving unwelcome feedback for example.
My Seven Stages are outlined above (with the relevant etching.) I believe these too can be applied to the struggles we face in life. It need not be related solely to death and dying.
At the end of my blog I usually write something along the lines of “I’d love to hear what you think in the comment box below or you can contact me directly on my facebook page.”
On this one, I won’t do so. But I will say that if you are going through grief, anxiety, depression, whatever it may be; it is worth talking to someone about it. I didn’t and dealt with it the hard way.