Resilience through creativity – Ana’s story

What motivates you to make art?

I love making other people happy through my art. I love their smiles; it brings a smile to my face. Creating and then giving it to others to show my appreciation of them is part of the joy I get from art. I want to be positive; I want people to smile. 

Ana

What would you say to someone wanting to explore their creativity?

I’m self-taught, I’m an adventurer, so I’d say, do not be afraid of paint! Never be afraid of paint. Don’t be afraid of making a mistake, you can just go over it and it’ll be fine. I had one the other day [an artwork], it was a face – she took a while and, in the end, I didn’t like it, so I just went over it and started again.

How has art helped you cope with the uncertainty that MS can sometimes bring into life?

MS is a bad smelly friend - It’s with you at all times, so what can you do? You have to live with it. Get cranky, get annoyed but never feel sorry for yourself.

At this stage, I’m visualising landscapes. I know I can’t do those things anymore, I love skies, I love water, I love landscapes. But I can’t go on sand; I can’t go on water; I can’t climb mountains anymore. But it doesn’t matter - I visualise them instead and paint them that way.

You cannot dwell on your MS, what for? So, by developing a hobby, a skill such as art, something creative, you keep your mind active. It helps you become stronger, more positive and build resilience. 

What does a resilient mindset mean to you?

Always make yourself happy, make yourself pretty, put lipstick on, be nice and gentle to yourself, put perfume on. Go outside with your walker – look for the beautiful ones that suit your style. Practise self-care – don’t let yourself go. 

When people give you compliments, say thank you, be proud of who you are and be happy. It’s always good to talk about it, don’t hold in your MS. If you’ve got it, say it and be proud.

If like Ana, you love art, you might want to join us for a celebration of art and creativity at our upcoming MS Virtual Art Show in October.  Under the theme “celebrating resilience through art,” we invite the MS community, including carers and families,  to share original art pieces - be it painting, illustration, sculpture, craft or photography - that somehow represents what resilience means to you. Find out more about the 2020 MS Virtual Art Show here, or contact our team at msart@ms.org.au.

If you want to have a look at Ana's art, visit her website www.artistana.com.au 


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