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Purposeful Distractions (In-progress)
Purposeful Distractions 
This body of work is in-progress and will be shown at the end of February in the Riggs-Leidy Gallery at the Maryland Institute College of Art.
At the onset of this project I watched a TED Talk about “emotional first aid” by a psychologist named Guy Winch, and in this talk he offered a simple idea that really stuck with me. He shared, 

"Studies tell us that even a two-minute distraction is sufficient to break the urge to ruminate in that moment. And so each time I had a worrying, upsetting, negative thought, I forced myself to concentrate on something else until the urge passed. And within one week, my whole outlook changed and became more positive and more hopeful.” 

I decided to try it, and began to employ a “two-minute distraction” whenever feelings of hopelessness, fear, anxiety, etc. felt a little too all encompassing. The place I most frequently began to go in these 120 second spurts was an imagined home where I might live one day. I tried keeping steady focus, expounding in my mind on what would it look like, where it would be, and how it would feel. Eventually, I just had to put pencil to paper and began sketching out what I envisioned. While I have always had a sketchbook practice, this was a very deliberate endeavor focused on distraction, or so I thought. As I continued this practice, the images began to include fond memories, people, and even simple observational landscapes once again. I found that what I first turned to as a diversion from life was actually a ritual act of care that helped me to remain more present and grounded in my moments. 

To me, this work is a celebration and demonstration of how engaging in creating art can deeply enrich people’s lives and encourage an appreciation for the many mysteries and dilemmas that come with it.
Purposeful Distractions (In-progress)
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Purposeful Distractions (In-progress)

1
41
0
Published: