This is my personal self-healing portrait. By following what I did, you can make one, too. I first started with an art journal. I used a Strathmore Visual Journal with 140lb/300g paper because I used watercolors in my self-portrait.
On the left page, I used a soft-lead pencil to write self-critical sentences about myself; those things I know I should say about myself, but I find myself thinking at times…like, “I am not good enough or pretty enough to find success or have friends…etc. I filled the page to release all the pent up negative energy.
Then, on another sheet of paper I wrote down the good intentions behind those statements. My self-doubt gremlins wanted to protect me from being hurt. When you keep your self-esteem low, you are not likely to dream big. Big dreams leads to taking risks, which may result in great disappointment (or great success and joy); however, I know we automatically lose all those chances we do not take! We automatically fail all those activities we do not try!
I gave thanks to the negative statements (my gremlins of self-doubt) for their good intentions and over-painted my doubts, fears and negativity on the left page of my journal with gesso (a derivative of white acrylic paint) so those statements were no longer visible. On the right side of my journal I then sketched myself, emphasizing my best features. I used watercolor crayons and pencils.
Next, I added water and watercolor paints. I swept my hair to the left page and added a colorful background; I painted in hearts and added butterflies using a butterfly rubber stamp and ink. The final and most important step is to add a positive statement to heal my heart, “Believe in Yourself and Be Love.” I also added one word to my face to reinforce my healing, “FAITH.”
This art project was quite therapeutic. You could make this a collage project using a photograph of yourself, and other images and positive words, if drawing and painting are not your favorite activities. It would be fun to print out an image of yourself using the grey scale option. Then, you could color it any way you wanted. The possibilities are endless.