By Marina L. Reed and Marian Grace Boyd
Fear has a great ability to dwarf our spirits, especially our creative spirits. And yet it is precisely at these times, when fear abounds, that artists are needed by all. Artists have always shown us the way through dark times, into the light. Artists create and that alone is a powerful message and reminder to all. As an artist, I was initially buried in the avalanche of media information and isolation. But then I remembered a key teaching of Thich Nhat Hanh; we must be cautious about what we feed our souls. And so I turned off the TV, stopped listening to news on the radio and was selective in what I read on social media. And slowly, I could hear my artistic voice again. I began to paint, to express the pain and hope through my art; I began to write, to help others make sense of our situation and myself in the process. We are making music to soothe our souls. We need our artists. They are finding ways to give concerts on different platforms, perform on Instagram, write us stories we can find links to, see art on Facebook. They are finding ways to engage and comfort our souls and it is truly breathtaking and marvelous. And in these times when grief is knocking at every door in some way, we need comfort, breathtaking moments and light.
Promise, painting. By Marina L.Reed Shimmer, mixed media. By Marian Grace Boyd.
Marina and Marian, we are a team. We have combined our talents and expertise and have written three books that deal with grief, and there is a lot of grief right now. Our books are the Remember Series. You can read more about each book and where to get them on marinalreed.com - go to the Remember, It’s OK page. They are being released this May and will be available in digital and paper form at independent stores (curbside for now) and online at amazon and Indigo. You can also follow us on Instagram at rememberitisok. We don’t have to be crippled by this grief and loss around us and beside us. There is a way through. And although our books are specific to losing certain people we love, they are also a guide to how we can cope with any grief we encounter, even grief associated with this Covid-19 Pandemic, and find healing. Because grief is what we feel when there is a loss, when our normal is threatened, changed or ended. Those feelings of disbelief, of anxiety, anger, sadness and other thoughts and feelings we are experiencing because of this pandemic take us into the field of grief. Our books can give support to you, a reference, a feeling of togetherness. And if you need more help, the Remember, It’s OK page at marinalreed.com has links to further support and guide. You can also go to this Facebook page; Guelph Together for Emotional Health - a peer-based response to Covid19. Being able to cope with grief, may allow you as an artist to find your own creative voice again.
Expressing emotions through art is extremely important, now more than ever, more so than talking about them. Artistic expression allows us to tap into that part of us that is deeper and richer than all things surface.
Guelph still provides instruments and supplies to help musicians, curbside. Art stores make sure visual artists get what they need to create their expressions on canvas; curbside. And there are stores that can help you find the device to get your word creations to the world.
Dear artists everywhere….keep creating and bringing light into our lives.
Marina L. Reed (honB.A., M.A., B.Ed.) is Canadian. She works with her artistic talents as a visual artist, musician and writer to support others. She has also worked as an educator and journalist. She has written two fiction books and co-created the Remember, It’s OK series. Photo credit: Niina Rosa
Marian Grace Boyd. Grief counselor, artist and co-author of co-created the Remember, It’s OK series.
Photo credit: Ainsly Boyd