I'm about to start my third year of my Fine Art degree. I have lived with a mental illness for about ten years now and I began creating art as a form of therapy and an escape from myself. When I paint I lose the sense of time, my surroundings and more importantly my thoughts. This has allowed me to learn to manage my mental health as it reduced a lot of my stress. I am no longer as agoraphobic as I used to be and I'm able to attend my local arts university where I receive formal training to further develop my art practice.
My work aims to visually describe living with a mental illness and I specifically target the general public. Here in England, it is common to fear and mock the mentally ill as well as dismiss it and assume they are making it up for attention.
Recently I put on my first art show, using 11 artists from my city who live with a mental illness. I just wanted to share the success of this show and what it has led to.
I wanted to share this to show that those suffering are not alone and that we ourselves can be the voice that promotes social change within our communities. I came across an interesting quote recently which read something like. "Be the person you needed when you were young.", which encompassed what I am trying to do.
Check out Siris' work at http://www.sirishill.co.uk