In my personal experience artwork comes from within, it's the inner being the very soul of an individual according to how I think and feel at any given time, influenced by life events, emotion, everyday scenes we all act out throughout our circumstances within the world in which we live and call our own. My innermost thoughts and feelings come out in my artwork giving the appreciator insight into my world, my fears, insecurities, passions, loves, hopes and fears etc. My work is personal spontanious energetic vibrant and joyous. Creativity is a gift I want to share and hopefully you will be touched by my work, I want to convey my personality and joie de vivre with the onlooker. My stlye of artwork I would describe as freestyle spontanious and accidental, my work just evolves and is very unique. I have an artbook published including many of my works entitled "Reflections Of The Child Who Grew Up. I have also had my work exhibited in New York, Greenland, Germany, and the UK.
Biography: Pauline Quinnin has battled with mental health problems for most of her life. She has recently found that a high dose of creativity is the only prescription she needs. Here, Pauline tells her story: People who suffer with mental health problems are very intelligent and creative people as I have found with my own experience of suffering from mental health problems including depression, severe post traumatic stress syndrome, anxiety, anorexia, agoraphobia and obsessive compulsive disorder. I believe that these problems can be minimised by the release of creativity and that through creativity you can finally rely on something/someone: I trust in myself. Where did it all start?! I suppose it started as I’ve been writing, as part of therapy, a book for 14 years – it’s my personal story - and it’s currently being edited. As soon as I had finished writing I was very aware that I had to find something to keep me busy. I’ve always been creative; decorating, flower arranging, cake decorating and craft work – the sort of stuff you can do around the house. But when I had finished my writing, I was too skint to buy anything; all I had was pen and paper. I drew a vase of flowers, it was really small and later I added some colour. I don’t really know why I drew, I just got curious and wanted to, maybe I was bored. But the next time I went out to buy some plants, I ended up coming home with a sketchpad and pens instead! I wasn’t sure why I had bought them, as I couldn’t draw, in fact I had always hated art. Yet I just started drawing, nothing in particular, just whatever I felt like. It kept me afloat, made me feel better, as instead of going inwards and getting frustrated: my spirit is being set free. I was really surprised at what I was producing and, to be honest, a little bit scared. I couldn’t understand, sometimes I still don’t, how I could do this if I had never been trained. I got a little spooked about it. You hear of people having a natural talent, but that’s other people, it doesn’t happen to me. But I’m living proof that creativity can happen to anyone if you just put your mind to it. I just allowed my creativity to come out through my drawings, I don’t know where it all came from, I just drew and I knew it helped. I think a build up of mental activity that is not released in a positive way can build into anger, frustration, tension, stress, anxiety and depression. I had an appointment with my psychologist, Kay Toon, who told me about World Mental Health Day and the Inspire project and asked me to paint something to display. I called Adele (who was the artist in residence with the Inspire project) and she agreed to come and have a look at the stuff I had already done, as I didn’t really have time to produce something new. Adele took several paintings to exhibit and this gave me such a boost, it was a new lease of life. The exhibition itself gave me mixed feelings, I was kind of embarrassed but thought that if it was helping other people in any small way, and was helping reduce the stigma of mental health problems, then I should just grin and bear it. But now, I am so proud of what I’ve achieved. Adele mentioned doing another exhibition and I really wanted to produce something better so I started painting again, I don’t know where all my ideas were coming from, they just tumbled out really quickly! Adele took about 66 of my paintings and a sculpture for the exhibition at Wakefield Arts Mill, it was like this wasn’t really happening to me! Somebody at the exhibition brought one of my paintings, and they were an art tutor from Bretton, so they obviously really know their stuff! That was very flattering. At the exhibition, I met John Holt, from the Artist in Mind (AIM) project, and he was really interested in my work and told me all about AIM. Throughout all my painting I have made notes about what I have done and why, and John is keen to make a book with all my painting and writing in it, and we’ve started to work on that. I also met Bob Mills from ‘Prescription:art’ and he was keen to show some of my work at exhibitions in Leeds. He said he would take about 30 pieces but he liked so many of them that he ended up taking 100! I couldn’t believe it! My work has been displayed at exhibitions in Wakefield, Leeds, Hebden Bridge and Cornwall, and near Christmas an exhibition is going out to Norway! It’s an incredible feeling to know that people in another country are going to be looking at my work. Art of Oak, a shop in Wakefield, is also displaying my work, which again, is a great feeling as it’s so local to me. In the last year I have painted over 700 pictures and I’m not sure if I’ll ever stop! I made a choice not to use drugs, but an alternative therapy instead. I don’t see this as mental illness anymore, I see it as creativity inside me that’s trapped and can’t get out. If I’m painting I haven’t got the symptoms captured inside me, as I think symptoms are created out of frustration. All the frustration can’t get out, there’s no release. But now, it’s like, in forty years, I’ve finally got a chance.
Country: United Kingdom (Great Britain)
Site: Pauline Quinnin
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