"Being an artist isn’t just a “right brain” activity---you must use ALL of your brain, body and spirit to create. When the creation is done, the whole is much more than the sum of its parts… and so is the creator." - Lyrae Perry

The Healing Gifts of Art

I asked my friend Nancy Jones to share her story because I think it’s inspirational and it may be helpful to others who may find themselves or a loved one in a similar situation.  I know you will enjoy reading this and please feel free to pass the information on!

The Healing Gifts of Art

By Nancy Jones, Corona, CA

In 2010, a TIA (mini stroke) brought me to the realization of the great importance of Art in my life.  I had been studying watercolor painting for about 4 years and thoroughly enjoyed it.  After having the TIA, returning to classes was a real eye-opener.  My teacher told me I should not paint that day…she only wanted me to take a ball-point pen and just doodle or scribble randomly.  So, I set about doing just that.  I filled the paper with loops and swoops and filled in some spaces with symbols of things I love.  As I became engrossed in my work, I felt as though my brain was coming alive….it was an awareness that something good was happening and at one point I began to cry.  I was overwhelmed…I don’t know why, only that whatever was happening was positive.  Since that time I have come to fully believe that art is not only a process, it is a great gift.  Art feeds us emotionally, spiritually, physically and socially.  It brings about our creative instincts and it is a wonderful sort of meditation.  Being engrossed in art makes time, troubles, pain and brokenness disappear and helps us to be “in the moment.”.

Nancy and poppy painting

Nancy Jones with her painting of a poppy at a recent art show!

My art teacher frequently speaks of her experiences with students who are challenged with physical or mental disabilities.  The uncontrollable tremors of Parkinsonism can be stilled when the student begins to draw or paint and Autistic people become more centered and calm after taking classes.  If anyone reading this is affected by physical or mental challenges, I urge you, if you so desire, to do art…draw, paint, learn music, write poetry or prose.  Let loose the creative spirit that dwells in each of us and know that it will be a healing gift.

The following quote says very eloquently what art is all about:

“Go into the arts. I’m not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.”

–Kurt Vonnegut


Artist’s Self Portrait – Kurt Vonnegut  1922 – 2007

Thank you Nancy! Lyrae


  1. I like this, Lyrae.

    I thought I would add one of my favorite Henry Miller quotes, which always motivates me to produce art.

    “Develop an interest in life as you see it; the people, things, literature, music-the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself.”

    • Lyrae Perry says:

      Aaron, that is a wonderful quote! I love positive messages and that is poetry–speaking to our hearts. Thank you so much for sharing.

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