Comics, community, and the acupunk

Next Friday, July 28th, I am co-facilitating The Tao of Art workshop II: Comics! with Sonny from Purple Cloud Center for Eastern Medicine. During our last workshop I was incredibly moved by the participants creating together in community. I can't wait to learn more from Sonny about Taoism, practice meditation, and see what wild or sad or funny or weird stories we can tell through words and pictures. You can learn more about Sonny here, but I have to add to his bio that I like to call him "the acupunk" based on his sweet musical taste and style. If you want to come, we would love to have you. No experience needed. Click here to reserve your spot.


Sonny the Acupunk

Comics are powerful. Last week I had the honor of leading a comics workshop at Artworks, a drop-in community artmaking space at the Harold Washington Library. Here's a little about Artworks from the library's website:

"The mission of ArtWorks is to cultivate inclusive communities through the arts and cultural exchange. Our aim is to foster the development of understanding and compassion between people, despite social and cultural differences. ArtWorks programs are based on the beliefs that the arts belong to everyone, and that collective art making practices promote respect for difference and inspire positive social change."

I thought maybe 6 or 7 people would show up for the workshop, but just before it began, ten people were around the table... then twenty.... then thirty! We pushed tables together, grabbed extra paper and pens, and started drawing! It reminded me of just how accessible comics are. You only need paper and pencil or pen. It might seem intimidating to think of how to tell a visual story, but with a little structure and support the ideas start to flow. Check out Artworks on the 8th floor of Harold Washington, every Wednesday 4:30-7:30-- free!

What I'm reading

One of my favorite things about being an art therapist is that I never stop learning. While technically a requirement of maintaining licensure, through continuing education credits, learning is really so much more than that. 

I learn from each person I meet, whether in individual therapy, a group, a community-building setting, supervision, or in my teaching practice. I learn by listening. I also learn by reading. It seems like each time I have a new client or have a meaningful conversation with a friend I am inspired to read or re-read another book, which then feeds back into my conversations and my art therapy practice. This is a photo I took today of all the books I am currently reading or re-reading. A mix of non-fiction and fiction, of comics and prose. A mix of subjects including cartooning, grief and loss, gender and sexuality, HIV/AIDS, neurodiversity, cancer, end-of-life, death, slavery, history, feminism, trauma, joy, and creativity. You know, life.

I will never stop learning. But perhaps I should impose a moratorium on buying books for a while...