On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Monday, November 22, 2010

All bottled up

Last week I was in a craft store that was selling rubber stamps at 40% off, a discount I couldn't walk by. I found a fairly largish stamp of a jar, a simple outlined shape and was thinking of all the ways I could use it. I'm not a rubber stamp artist, I rarely use such stamps, but I'm always looking for ideas I can use in therapy groups, especially with teenagers.

I've come up with two ideas so far. One is to line up jars on a shelf and, given this Thanksgiving season, draw in all the situations and people and things we are thankful for, a veritable pantry of thankfulness. The second idea was the unbottling of too many diverse emotions, letting them spill out in a trickle or a gush, but out in the open either way. If a client offered me this image I would regard it as a gold mine of material to consider -- what's being held in and who is the helper removing the lid? I used basic techniques of masking to separate the two images and drew in the fingers. I would have drawn in more of the hand, but I'm right-handed and it took my right hand to both remove the lid and to draw, so I gave up quickly!

Now that I've presented the image to myself, I can begin to journal the responses. And come up with a third and fourth way to use my new stamp!


  1. Just read thru many posts on your blog to catch up and see what you have been doing. Great stuff, and I find it heartwarming that you continue to reach out to the kids in juvenile detention. I love your rules about sketch journals. So funny! Thanks for the smiles.

  2. I love both ideas for using the jar image: the goods we've stored up and the emotions we need to spill out... Both are great art-therapy options.

  3. Hi Linda & Rebecca -- Thank you both for stopping by. I am ALWAYS on the lookout for art journaling activities to support reluctant teen group therapy!

  4. The spilling out looks to me winglike. Intentional? Lovely that you're keeping at it.

  5. Wings, you say? Not intentional but one more thing to thinks about! Thank you for stopping by.

  6. Awesome sketch! I love how you did the bottle with all the emotions running out. Creative thinking.


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