Healing Art

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This post written by Resident Artist - Dorothy Berry-Lound

Dorothy is 1stAngel Arts Magazine’s Resident Artist – April 2015
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I am a member of the Fellowship of Authors and Artists which aims to promote and encourage the use of writing and all art forms as a means of therapy and self-healing. I am also a member of the Arts and Healing Network. The images I create always have a story, a message I am trying to get across or imagery to make the viewer stop and think and colour plays a big part in ‘developing the mood’.

Meteor Shower Heals Earth
Meteor Shower Heals Earth

I define my healing art as images that are designed to impart healing energy through intent, design, colour harmony and the infusion of healing energies using Reiki and holographic healing techniques. Many of my paintings start with sacred geometry. I go through a meditative process of creating a sacred geometry underlay for my painting which sets the size and placement of what I am creating – you can’t see this in the final image of course because it has been painted over!

The key element to my work though is the use of colour and colour harmony and I apply this in m painting and my mixed media work. In the previous articles I have reviewed how colours influence our mood and emotions and how we are often drawn to those that we need to create balance in our lives. At one level with healing art I may be trying to stimulate a particular chakra, or energy centre in the body, with the use of colour.  On one day a viewer will be drawn to that colour as it provides something the body needs.  On another day they will show no interest in that colour.

Landscape Mist
Landscape Mist

More generally, however, the images work at a more subtle level using colour harmony to provide a satisfying balance or unity of colours.  Much of this is based on the colour wheel of course.  This can involve monochromatic images using the same colour family, complementary colours or perhaps two complementary colours next to and opposite one another on the colour wheel.  Another is to use three or more colours that sit next to each other on the wheel.  There are many variations.

Before selecting the colours for a healing art design it is important to consider where the piece of art is going to go (ie taking account of what colours work well in a bedroom, a playroom, a hallway etc).  So, if I was approached to create a piece for an office I would consider using blue which is relaxing in a high pressure environment.  I would use yellows and oranges to lift the spirits and stimulate creativity for schools and other places of learning; subtle tones of red which increases appetite and boosts energy for restaurants, and pinks to calm things down, relax the muscles and reduce aggression and violence for perhaps care homes, detention centres, prisons and hospitals.

The Tree Triptych
The Tree Triptych

Hospitals benefit enormously from the introduction of nature photography as well as harmonious designs.  Art helps distract patients in healthcare environments and decreases levels of anxiety and worry. Nature’s colours tend to complement each other naturally and they are a great way of providing relief from the white/grey monotonous walls.  They can also be used to good effect in waiting rooms where earth tones, greens and blues have a calming effect.  As well as images of nature, happy smiling or caring faces and pictures of animals have a positive impact on care home residents.

How could or does this work in practice? On the news once I saw a woman being interviewed in her hyperactive son’s bedroom whilst he was throwing his toys around and throwing a tantrum.  The walls of his bedroom were bright yellow with orange designs and his duvet cover was a swirl of red cartoon characters.  I have no doubt that introducing calmer, cooler colours in his bedroom might have helped her situation!

Apricot Blossom Collage
Apricot Blossom Collage

I have been working with a lady who has been treated for cancer and we have worked with various colours as part of a combination of therapies including Reiki to help her cope with the effects of chemotherapy.  She rearranged her surrounding to accommodate the colours and this included soft furnishings and artwork in those colours.  This is where throw pillows, throws and pieces of wall art can tie all the colours together in a room to create the colour harmony effect we are looking for.  Another person with chronic fatigue syndrome has benefited from having a red cushion in their chair to boost their lower chakra energy as part of her therapy.

So, as well as being good to look at, artwork can contribute to our health and well being in subtle ways and can be designed to perform a particular healing role or contribute to creating a supportive, balanced environment.

New Artwork by Dorothy Berry-Lound

New Artwork by Dorothy Berry-Lound

Beautiful pink hydrangeas shown here in all their glory but I have shown the hydrangeas offset against a ghostly echo of themselves. Hydrangeas are so pretty, their large mop head of flowers always brings a smile to the face and lifts the heart. 
This beautiful montage portrays one of the most striking flowers of the summer, gorgeous hydrangeas. In this montage, the soft pink and lilac colours, the mop heads of the flowers and even the leaf clusters are drawn attention to. 
A collage of three images of gorgeous hydrangeas in various shades of pink, blue and with a hint of yellow on one of the blooms. These bright images make a striking collage. Hydrangeas are such lovely shrubs, not least because as well as producing th... 
A wonderful, unusual, collage made out of a series of 'Gorgeous Hydrangeas' images. This would be particularly striking on a plain wall and would certainly prove a conversation piece with visitors.  
Here we see gorgeous hydrangea flowers in shades of pink, contrasting with the wooden slats on which they are stood. The leaves are pretty too but they come into their own in the autumn when the shrub produces fabulous autumn colour and interesting l... 
Gorgeous hydrangeas in various shades of pink - popular with bees and as a shrub a welcome addition to any garden. In addition to the glorious display of mophead flowers, in the autumn you get great autumn colour and leaf shape. 
Hydrangeas are a beautiful shrub, really good value with spectacular flowers in early Summer as shown here and then pretty autumn colour and leaf shape. This is one of a series of images based around 'gorgeous hydrangeas'. 
Sometimes beautiful memories creep through the cracks in our sadness, making us a smile. In the same way that this beautiful blue campanula has grown in the crack in an old brick wall. We focus on the beautiful flowers, not the fact that it is an old... 
This beautiful floral shows a dense collection of yellow polyanthus and crimson primula vialii in the bottom third of the image. The primula vialii on the left rise upwards leading your eye to the stems and tall leaves of the yellow iris that tower a... 
Perfect for Halloween, a dark mysterious image of a gothic cat guarding a pumpkin. The image is in black and white with a grunge effect and the words Happy Halloween! are shown in pumpkin-coloured capital letters. 
This is the front detail of a red Fiat 1500 Cabriolet. This car was manufactured between 1961 and 1967 and was participating in the 2017 Monte Cetona Classic Car Rally in Tuscany, Italy.  
This beautiful car is a Fiat 500 C saloon also known as the Fiat 500 Topolino. It was introduced in 1949 and produced until 1955. Here the car is parked in semi-shade in the main piazza in Cetona, Tuscany, Italy. Itwas participating in the 2017 Monte... 
A beautifully maintained Fiat 500 Abarth sits in the main piazza of Cetona in Tuscany, waiting for the next leg of the Monte Cetona Classic Car Rally. Abarth amp Co manufactured these cars during the 1960s until they were taken over by Fiat in 1971. 
Hiding where she thinks she can't be seen, the little grey cat looks out into the room, her amber eyes glowing with reflected light and matching the wooden edges to doorway. Cats are said to have second sight and are sometimes portrayed in the compan... 
Two small tabby kittens have snuggled up together in a tiny space and are fast asleep on top of one another. One has his paw over his face. Almost identical, the little ones are taking an afternoon nap during the heat of the day and are oblivious to ... 

Dorothy Berry-Lound

I promote life, work and energy balance through my art, poetry and writing. I specialise in photo painting –using my own photographs and using digital software techniques to develop the story of the images further with colours and textures. I was awarded Best Photopainter 2015 by CQ Magazine.Promoting the use of art for healing is an important focus for my artwork and I have developed a range of healing art and colour harmony images. The pieces I create always have a story, a message I am trying to get across or imagery to make you stop and think.

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