Relax and paint. It will sooth the soul.
Linda B. Spencer, Ph. D.
I have been an artist all my life. I have to create. In the course of my education I realized that art is more than a fun hobby. It is actually a tension reliever, a great centering device, a wonderful healing modality and work that can speak to me years after it is created.
My book, Heal Abuse and Trauma Through Art: Increasing Self-worth, Healing of Initial Wounds, and Creating a Sense of Connectivity, is the result of doctoral research that explores the connection between the expression of creativity and one's physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.
I have been in the business world for many years and you can find me listed in:
Who's Who of Professional & Business Women,
Who's Who International,
Who's Who of Intellectuals, and 2000 Notable American Women,
AMERICAN ART COLLECTOR 7/07.
I am a Member of The National League of American Pen Women, Washington D.C
National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington D.C.
HOW DOES ART HEAL?
Art's power to evoke emotion reveals art's healing properties. Bringing forth our images - regardless of their ability to unnerve us - and trusting that the process will allow us to transcend the mundane visually connects us with our inner core, a place of wholeness that remains intact. Furthermore, any person can reap the benefits of art; the content or quality of the product is secondary to the feelings and insights obtained through the processes of self-expression or through visual observations.
Art is a natural process for learning transformational thinking. The artist begins with some medium and creates something. As the artist works the image, he or she transforms it by adding to it or subtracting from it. Artistic expression is a way of taming the impulsive drives and promoting the development of higher ego functions. Expressing feelings onto paper, canvas or clay vents feelings symbolically and negates the necessity to act out hostile emotions; the symbol gives conscious expression to unconscious mental content. Also, art therapy is an effective treatment modality because falsification is difficult.
INTERVIEW WITH ALEX PEOPLES, FROM A PAPER CALLED THE MUSE.
ALEX: How does the healing actually work?
LINDA: Subject matter an artist may have difficulty confronting often appears in their artwork disguised in symbolic form. For instance, in my book I recount the story of how one of the artists used her artwork to confront childhood sexual abuse issues. When she began the art process her symbolism was disguised. Now it is blatant! As her acceptance of the past grows, the need for disguised symbolism diminished. Art therapy can also be less frightening than talk therapy.
ALEX: Can one do this for themselves?
LINDA: Yes, in fact I did it without planning on doing it. I belonged to a group of women called Women on the Edge. We decided it may be fun to each bring an item to our meeting, and one by one we'd take all the items home so each of us would have a chance to paint/create a piece from all 6 of these items. They were, a scarf, a big rooster, a little lion, a paper weight, a little animal cage you'd find on a cracker jacks box, and I can't recall the last piece.
I made a couple of drawings from the items and then fixed my mind on one and created it. My painting made the cage big, the lion large bird was made small enough to fit in the cage, the lion became larger and the scarf was the base. The paperweight had little relevance. It was a small piece of background.
After it was almost finished I put it back about 10 foot and took a look to see how it was going. I got this huge wave of recognition of my then current life. There I was, the bird, feeling trapped in my beautiful home screaming and complaining my head off to the lion (my husband) who just layed there watching me rant and rave. Boy was that ever my life. I titled the piece "Bird in a Gilded Cage."
ALEX: How do you begin a painting?
LINDA: I start with an empty canvass and put a few lines on it. Then I let the painting lead me. I don't try to manipulate the results. I go with the flow. In my research for my doctorate I wrote a book about the two types of artists, the realistic artists and the abstract artists. Although I can do either I get a lot more pleasure from the expressionistic rather than the realistic art. For me, if it already exists, there's no point painting it. I like to create things that don't exist yet at all. I like to add something new to the world.
Judges: Kelly Detweiler (Santa Clara University), & Edith Bergstrom.
1997-Gallery Saratoga. Featured artist
1997-Fremont Hills Country Club. Los Altos Hills.Group Show.
1997-Los Gatos Art Association monthly displays
1997-Saratoga Contemporary Artists. Peer award
1997-Burrell School Winery Gallery. Ongoing display
1997-Silver Mountain Winery, Featured artist
1997-Watsonville fairgrounds, Santa Cruz
1997-San Jose Arts and Craft Fair
1997-Various business locations for month long displays
1997-Garden show for Gallery Saratoga
1997-Boulevard Coffee. Featured artist
1998-Tait Museum, juried show. "Oprah: on Texas." Juror: Dale Laitenen.
1998-Jumpin' Java. Featured artist
1998-Whole Foods, Los Gatos. Featured artist
1998-Vintner's Festival, Burrell School Winery. Featured artist
1998-Gallery Saratoga, Featured artist
1998-Los Gatos Meadows. Featured artist
1998-Various businesses- month long displays
1998-Saratoga Communtiy Center, group show
1998-Los Gatos DMV
1998-Triton museum VAAST juried show. Two prizes. First place "Pilgrimage", Honorable mention "Sammy the Bull". Judges: Christopher Schink, JoAnn Northrup (curator, de Saisset Museum), and Robin Lasser (San Jose State University)
1998-Provident Crediti Union
1998-Saratoga Community Center
1998-Los Gatos Museum juried show. Third place "Playing With The Animals" Karen Frey, juror.
1998-Saratoga Book Go Round
1999 Whole Foods, Los Gatos, Ca One Woman Show
1999 DMV Los Gatos, CA ongoing group show
1999 Saratoga CC, Saratoga, CA ongoing group show
1999 Our Lady of Fatima, Saratoga CA, ongoing group show
1999 Whole foods, Los Gatos, CA. Another One Woman Show
1999 Los Gatos Counsel Chambers, Los Gatos, CA One Woman Show
1999 Gallery Saratoga, Saratoga CA, Featured Artist
1999 Fremont Hills Country Club, Los Altos Hills, CA group show
1999 Triton Museum, Santa Clara
1999 Post Street Gallery, San Jose, CA
1999 Book Go Round, Saratoga, CA
1999 Pete's, San Jose, CA
1999 Los Gatos Museum, Open Jury Show
1999 Los Gatos Museum, juried LGAA member show, 2nd place W/C
1999 Local Businesses
2000 Santa Clara County Fair, judged show, 2nd place & HM
2000 LGAA open jury show, 2nd place MM, Moses Roizen juror
2000 SCA 2nd place, peer review
2000 SCA garden show, First & Second place, Mixed Media
2000 DMV group show
2000 Los Gatos Museum, open jury show. Second Place
2000 Los Gatos Museum, member show, First in Mixed Media category.
2002 Mount Dora Arts Festival, Mount Dora, FL
2002 Eustis Art Fair, Eustis, FL
2002 Hospice Art Fair, Mount Dora, FL
2002 MDCA Christmas art show, Mount Dora, FL
2002 Red Door Gallery, Mount Dora, FL
2002 The Frame Shop, Orlando, FL
2002 Gallery Saratoga, Saratoga, CA
2003 Red Door Gallery, Mount Dora, FL
2004 Wolfe Gallery, Deland, FL
2004 Artisan Gallery, Deland, FL
2004 Country Cottage Crafts, Mount Dora, FL (cards)
2004 MDCA Christmas show, Mount Dora, FL
2004 Timothy Gallery, Winter Park, FL
2005 Artisan Gallery, Deland, FL
2005 Wolfe Gallery, Deland, FL
2005 Country Cottage Crafts, Mount Dora FL
2005 Timothy Gallery, Winter Park, FL
2005 Lake Eustis Museum of Art, Eustis FL
2005 Solutions Center, Mount Dora, FL
2005 Blue Martini, Deland, FL
2006 Timothy Gallery, Winter Park, FL
2006 Wolfe Gallery, DeLand, FL
2006 Oceola Artfest, Kissimmee, FL red ribbon, $500. awardbr>
|Fused Glass Jewelry
I took a year off to gather my wits and during that time learned the art of making fused glass jewelry.
2007 Began making fused glass jewelry
2007 Artisan Gallery, Mount Dora, FL
2007 Timothy Gallery, Winter Park
2008 Added beaded jewelry
2008 Lake Eola Art show, Orlando, FL
2008 Lakeridge Winery Show, Clermont, FL
2008 National League of American Pen Women, Washington D.C.
2008 National League of American Pen Women, Gainsville, FL
2008 Numerous local shows
2009 Showed Jewelry during Mount Dora Artfest, Mt. Dora, FL
2009 Lakeridge Winery Show, Clermont, FL
2009 Antique Boat Show, Tavares, FL
2009 Mount Dora Art show at Em's
2009 Lakeridge Winery (Spring)
2009 Presbyterian church during Mt Dora Craft show (indoors, no set up)
2009 Mount Dora Yacht Club (indoors, no set up)
2009 Lakeridge Autumn and Winter
won ribbon 2009 Roar and Soar at Fantasy of Flight
2009 Antique and Classic Boat Show
2009 Festival of lights, Tavares, FL
MIXED MEDIA ENCAUSTIC COLLAGE PAINTINGS
1936 MUSIC COLLAGES