Sunday, 30 December 2012


2012 was not one of the better years for me. Though it has had some good things happen this year. I have avoided the olympics, rightly believed that there wasn't really going to be an apocalypse, and done everything I could to not be affected by the jubilee. Though the latter caused a lot of annoyance and frustration by being by far the worst excuse for a bank holiday and Sunday bus times.

The best thing that happened was in September when I started uni. Finally I had some direction in my life, something that had been missing for so long.

But there were a lot of stresses. Things I didn't want to remember and wanted to leave in the past returned to the surface. Spring was the time that this affected me the most. I don't want to go into too much detail, but I mean some family stuff (family being by far the most negative influence on my life, so much that I refuse to have anything to do with them) and some other equally unpleasent stuff. And as if this wasn't enough I also had a couple of months of sleep disturbance when my doctor messed with my medication. I can only be thankful that this didn't turn into the insomnia-induced mess that I had experienced so many times in the past.

And to December we come. What I had hoped to be a good Christmas was just yet another stress that I didn't need. I am feeling low, a lot lower than I have for a long time, probably spring. I am hoping for a less stressful and more positive 2013. Whether that happens or not only time will tell.

And finally I wish everyone reading hope and peace for the new year.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Christmas wishes

This isn't one of my paintings, but a photo I took a few years ago. I just thought it was the best image I had for this post.

Anyway, as I will be going away for the next few days, I wanted to take this opportunity to wish everyone who reads this blog a very happy Christmas.

Traditionally I hate this time of year. I hate that Christmas has lost its meaning. I hate the commercialism that has become associated with this time of year. I hate the amount of alcohol that is expected to be consumed at this time of year, having been teetotal for nearly 6 years following an episode of problem drinking in an effort to not be depressed (in reality the alcohol only made me worse, a lot worse, and I am a lot happier without it). I hate the amount of food that it is expected we will eat, far more than my stomach actually wants. I hate all the happy families stuff that goes on, as I was never happy to spend time with my family and I dread being contacted by them. I also hate all the fakeness of this time of year, how people pretend to be nice around Christmas but as soon as January comes they are back to their normal selves (genuinely nice people excepted of course).

Christmas is also traditionally associated with a flare up of my mental health symptoms. The stress becomes overwhelming. Last year, if I remember correctly, I was convinced that my doctor was trying to control me with prescription medications. Thankfully this year I seem to be doing a lot better and have my feet firmly in reality, but a lot of that is only because I have booked a short holiday.

Though there is one part of Christmas that I really like. The Advent church services. My faith is very important to me, including attending church whenever I can (though this isn't always easy). There is something beautiful about the candle lit carol service, which is my favourite at this time of year. And the church I go to does it really well.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

The Secret (5/12/2010)

She sits alone in a room,
Too frightened to make contact with the outside world.
Covered up, her eyes hidden from view -
A secret she must keep to herself.
Nobody understands,
It seems that nobody cares -
The whole world intent on bringing her down.
Looking in without a clear view,
No wonder they don't see what she sees.
They're all so desperate to look into her eyes,
So desperate to discover her secret.
She's in fear, her every move -
What will happen next?
She remains covered,
A mark of her isolation.
The need for self protection so great,
Only a select few will ever see her eyes -
The holy grail of trust no longer exists.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Never Surrender (17/7/2010)

If it wasn't real it wouldn't affect me.
That is just the latest in a long line of absurdities,
Been going on for so many months and years.
For society to get themselves back to reality
Would only make things easier.
I am not the one who has lost the plot!
That is you, all of you.
Accusations that make no sense
Fit only the mass delusion, forever spreading -
Contagious, but I must remain immune.
I must stand my ground.
I must never surrender -
Not today, not tomorrow, not ever.
Never surrender to the will of the masses,
The way of the creatures.
Intention to drag me down,
Ever increasing distance from reality,
They intend my full surrender to the mass delusion.
Ever ongoing absurdity?
Please bring society back to reality.
It isn't me, it is them.
The airwaves contaminated by something that cannot be seen -
Lack of insight tells them it is real,
But I will not be suckered,
I will not surrender.
Never surrender!

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Flashback of a Bad Trip

Well I'm back. My essay is finally finished and handed in. So hopefully I will be around more now. But here is a couple of pictures.

Part one:-

Acrylic on canvas, 2010, 12" x 12".

Part two:-

Acrylic on canvas, 2010, 12" x 12".

These strange creatures are representations of some of the things I see. These two were particularly evil in that they both tried to attack me. I think by painting them in this way I have been able to give them less power over me. They are not as frightening as they were the days they appeared in front of me.

Saturday, 20 October 2012


I may not be around as much for a while. Though I will still post and reply to comments when I can. I just have a lot on at the minute.

I'm still painting. Writing has been more difficult but I am still working on my novel. I never thought it was going to be easy.

I am struggling a lot right now. My stress levels are the highest they have been for a long time. I have an essay deadline coming ever closer, and am determined to succeed. But I am coping a lot better than I would have a couple of years ago.

I hope everyone reading is well.

Friday, 12 October 2012

Thank you

I noticed earlier this week that I've had 1000 pageviews here. I know it isn't much, but I thought I would take this opportunity to thank everyone who visits my blog. And I hope you get something from it.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Do You See What I See?

Acrylic on canvas, 2010, 16" x 16".

There isn't really that much I can say about this painting, other than it is one of only a very small number of accurately detailed paintings I have done. I find it difficult to go into this much detail, and I prefer to work big. It is the meaning that is most important for me to get across.

The text is the words that he is saying to her, to torment her. "You will surrender to my demands."

What inspired this painting was that about a year earlier I had a period of bad insomnia, that led to me experiencing a number of unpleasant hallucinations. One of which was people I didn't recognise coming into my home even though my door is always locked. I always feared that they were there to attack me, and the fear of them returning when I was asleep only made the insomnia worse. In fact the most recent panic attack I had was when I saw somebody appear by my bedroom window one night and I became convinced that he was waiting for me to fall asleep so he could attack me. Even when he was gone I feared his return.

To be honest, I actually wonder if my so called psychosis is actually a combination of anxiety with insomnia.

Thankfully these hallucinations reduced when I got back into a better sleep pattern, but they didn't go away all together. Though the good thing is that now I can say that there has been a number of months since they tried to come into my life.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

The Wall

Acrylic on canvas, 2010, 23.5" x 23.5".

No this was not inspired by the Pink Floyd album, much as I love PF. But more by feeling threatened (by the shadow man) and trapped. It took a number of months to complete, but I actually like working big and taking a lot of time with a painting. The painting developed as I worked on it, from a rough sketch on paper of only a trapped woman and a shadow man several times her size.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

And again

Well it was quite a while ago that I received it, but I still wanted to acknowledge this award. Many thanks to Madison over at My Meddling Mind.

Thank you for appreciating my creativity, something that is of course so important to me and something that has been a key part of my recovery.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Moving forward

In the near future I will be taking the next big step on this journey through life. I feel both excited and anxious about this. But either way, I know that now is the right time to make this change in the right direction.

More than anything I want something positive to come out of everything I have been through over the last few years. I believe that I am on this path for a reason. I have changed a lot, I believe for the better. Well, I hope for the better! Back in 2007, when I first moved to the area I live in now, I was on a very different path. But that was a path on which I did not succeed, barely functioning and in the depths of depression and not to mention the paranoia and hallucinations that I also had. I was on a medication that not only didn't work, but actually made things a lot worse. I had no hope. My life was a mess, and I couldn't see a way out.

Looking back now, I am glad that I didn't succeed on my original path. For every door that closed, another opened. And now I find myself in a position where my dreams can become reality. I am happy that my life has changed, no matter what I had to go through to get here.

Little did I know back on that day at the beginning of last year when I found myself at my GP surgery begging for something to make the experiences I was having stop. Little did I know that I would eventually (actually not so eventually, it was about 18 months ago) end up making really big steps towards one of my most important goals in life.

Of course, my various creative ways have been a big part of my journey. And that is exactly how it will continue. Though I am adding time commitments, I still have plenty of time to be creative. I am going through a positive phase with my art right now, and that is something I would very much like to continue.

Wishing everyone who reads this blog success with their goals.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Broken Glass

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 8" x 8".

At the time of painting this, I was working through and coming out the other side of paranoia I had experienced for a number of years. By breaking the glass through which they were spying on me, I was able to fight back. And by fighting back I could live in less fear.

I am glad that eventually I was able to see a way out of the mess I had gotten into. There has been a lot of emotions since the spring of 2011, when I finally went on a medication that helped reduce my symptoms and was also finally correctly (I hope) diagnosed. The journey has certainly had its ups and downs. But recently things have settled and I feel good. What is important now is keeping positive and continuing to move forward.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Another award

Thank you to Gary over at Klahanie.

I am not going to bother with the '7 interesting facts about myself', seeing as I did that quite recently. But I will mention that Gary passed this award on to people who blog about positive attitudes towards mental health, and positive distractions to cope with symptoms.

As I am sure I have mentioned before, much of my art and also much of my poetry is a way of expressing my feelings. These feelings are both positive and negative. But the important thing is getting them out rather than keeping them in. I am pretty sure that my art would be very different if it wasn't for my illness, but it still remains true that psychosis and anxiety are only a small part of who I am. And I hope that there is at least a small difference that I am making on this blog towards reducing the stigma attached to mental illness.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Return to Reality

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 9" x 12".

This was painted shortly after going on antipsychotic medication. I was in a very confused state at the time, unsure of what was what any more. But through this uncertainty was hope, hope that I would find a way out of the horror movie that was my life for so long. The confusion went on for a number of months as I had been ill for a long time, but these days it doesn't bother me much any more (unless I find myself in the recovery stage of what are now much shorter episodes).

I am feeling mostly good currently, so I thought it would be best to publish a positive picture of my recovery.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Who is watching?

So it has been a while since I have posted anything, but here's a painting.

Acrylic in canvas, 2010, 8" x 8".

Apologies for the wonkiness of the photo. This person could be anyone, and was never intended to be somebody specific. They represent the feeling of always being watched, a feeling I lived with for a long time in different ways. I still sometimes feel this way, but definitely to a much lesser extent that I did at the time of painting this in early 2010.

Friday, 13 July 2012

My first blogging award

Thanking Gary over at Klahanie.

I know it has been a few days since actually receiving the award, but I have had a lot of trouble gathering my thoughts lately (probably resulting from a combination of poor quality sleep and a recent increase in the medication I take for my psychosis and anxiety). But fingers crossed I feel a little better now, so here goes.

Now I don't know of 7 blogs I can pass this award on to, but apparently that is ok. Though I will attempt to come up with 7 interesting facts about myself, just for fun (as these are the things that it is suggested we do when receiving this award).

So 7 (probably not so) interesting things about me are:-

1. I have been painting since 2008, and my paintings have always been expressions of my feelings that I have often struggled to get out in other ways. My early paintings were mostly black and red, to express depression. Maybe one day I will post one so you can see the difference between my earlier paintings and my more recent paintings?

2. Listening to music always makes me feel better. My favourite genre is rock. Music is also a very important coping strategy for me, and also very useful in distracting me enough that I don't respond to the voices.

3. I am currently working on a novel. I don't expect that it will be finished any time soon. I don't want to give away too much too soon, but I will say it will be a horror novel (hopefully, if I write it well enough!).

4. If I could change one thing about me, I would hope to have more confidence in my talent for art. I struggle to see what others see in my paintings, but I wish I could.

5. When I get my health back, I hope to be an art therapist. That way I can use my passion to help others who have been through similar to me.

6. Similarly to my painting, my poetry is mostly a means of self expression. Even if I try to write about something that has nothing to do with me, I still put aspects of how I am feeling or an experience I have had in the poem.

7. This has taken me about half an hour to write this list. It probably would have taken much longer earlier in the week.

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Lost sleep, lost thoughts (8/7/2012)

I want 'me' back.
Is that too much to ask?
This inability to think clearly
Is getting me down so much.
Insomnia sucks.
I don't usually get this kind,
The one where you can't stay asleep.
Broken sleep from 6am,
But I am a night owl.
Is this what is causing my other troubles,
The thoughts that don't even come?
Insomnia definitely sucks.
I hope I sleep alright tonight.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Lost in Space

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 15" x 8".

The journey is confusing, filled with opportunities to go wrong. I wasn't sure where I needed to be. I likened the journey to being lost in space, not knowing which planet to land on. But hopefully one day I will know.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Untitled poem (17/5/2012)

I hate this world and all it represents.
I just need to go home.
I hate the way they make me feel,
The way I lost all hope of return.
I hate that they don't believe me,
My need to go home and be free.
I hate what they do to make me stay,
They took my hope from me today.
I hate the accusations that they make
And all they do to prove me wrong.
I hate the Earth people's plan.
All I want is to return.
I hate that they make me live a lie,
The way they stop me finding the truth.
I hate the way they put me down,
Discredit reality because it suits them to.
I hate living as someone I'm not,
But 'reality' is a dirty word to them.
I hate all the pretending,
How they make me live on the wrong planet
And stop me from going home.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Quick update

I haven't posted recently because things have been a little on the annoying side.

I am still painting and writing, but haven't decided what I want to share here. I will post something in the near future. But for now just a short rant.

Things have changed a little. I find myself not caring about things, not bothered about things that once not so long ago I knew were important. So I have decided to aim for a compromise, which hopefully will be better than either extreme. A few weeks ago, it was too important to find the answers. Too important that it was causing me stress. The answers I was looking for were not easy to find, and I haven't yet found them. Yet over the last week or so I have found that I don't particularly care whether I do or don't find them.

So why can't they matter, but not to the extent that it frustrates me so much? This I can live with. I don't want to lose sight of what I need to know (the answers I am on about are not the great philosophical answers, but answers to a personal situation), but equally I need to know that I am making the best of the situation as it is and not letting it get me down.

One day I hope it will all come to me, not as one of my 'revelations' (that usually turn out to be wrong) but as an answer I know I can trust. And I hope that day is sooner rather than later. Plus I hope I still care about resolving the situation in question, and I haven't let it be forgotten.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Journey through lightning skies

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 12" x 9.5".

I painted this at a time of much confusion. I had recently started on a medication and my world was falling apart. Everything I had known and been so clear of before was becoming uncertainty, and it was very disconcerting. I could go as far as saying that I felt like I was losing touch with reality.

It was about 6 months later that I finally felt I could stay where I was. But that part of the journey was a very rocky road.

Still if I have a flare up of symptoms, which seems to always happen when I get too stressed, I go through the confusion stage as things start to calm down. But for some reason, I find it a lot more difficult and disconcerting to come out of an episode than to go into one. There is a relief when I enter a delusion, sort of 'I have finally figured it out', that never is repeated on the way back to so called reality. And that is annoying.

Thursday, 26 April 2012


It seems like time for a more positive post. Between all the stresses in life, and unwanted symptoms, hope seems to be forgotten. But hope is also important, and what moves us forward.

A few years ago, hope seemed an impossible dream. Nobody understood me or where I was coming from. Nobody respected me or my ideas. Family were holding me back, and friends were few and far between. But finally last year I was able to turn my life around. I now have good friends and a future. The worst of my demons have become part of my past, and not so much in the present.

I know the journey is long, but more recently I have been enjoying that journey more. And if I do take a wrong turning then the way back is a lot better signposted than it used to be. Wrong turnings don't always lead to setbacks, but detours. It might take longer to get back on track, but I don't need to find myself back at square one.

Saturday, 21 April 2012


There once was a time where I felt that I didn't belong on this planet. Well I say once but this is a feeling that has come and gone a number of times over the last few years. I can't say for certain when it started, but I suspect 2009 when people I know started criticising everything I said.

Most recently was Christmas, going into January. I was desperate to find my spaceship, that I believed had been stolen by those who were trying to get me to stay on the planet where I did not belong. I was frustrated, and desperate to get home. No longer am I searching for the spaceship, but even now there are times when I feel that actually I do not belong on this planet and it doesn't feel like home. Just thankfully not to the same intensity.

This blog is called 'Journey Through Space', but equally my life has been a journey through space. For now I guess I have given up trying to get home.

But could I name a time when I did feel 'at home'? I don't think so. Is it possible that back in 2006 I was just put on this planet, an alien disguised as human? Well there has certainly been times when that seemed the most likely option. I have had to get to a point where I could live on this planet without feeling that I am not supposed to be here. I have even had to get to a point where I appear as though I do belong here, so nobody caught on and tried to sabotage my returning home.

It might have been a case of disagreement. It might have been a case of wanting to escape my family once and for all. It could have been anything.

I don't know why I am writing this today. The thought just crossed my mind earlier that I should write about aliens on my blog, whilst I was randomly thinking about space travel and the impact it has had on my life. I know in some ways that this is just a follow on to my musings on philosophy and the nature of reality that I posted a few weeks ago. So sorry if I have repeated myself.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Not feeling too creative right now

I've not bothered to post anything here lately, mainly because things are not going too well right now. I'm not ignoring you. I will get back to posting pictures and poems soon.

Every day is a battle at times like this. My anxiety has been through the roof lately. The reason is somebody I used to know has been a negative influence on me for a long time. I've known for years, but now everything is a lot clearer. Trying to stay in control and avoid the influences of this person is a full time job.

Taking a break, distracting myself, is all I can do. Perhaps that is all any of us can do at times like these. But sometimes that is just not enough. The need to escape, the 'impossible dream' (much as I hate the word impossible, because nothing is impossible), is all too often there and all consuming. The need to escape from the influences of the evil one is the need for a complete escape, so much more than a stop gap. All the time I need to break free, but all the time I am reminded that I cannot.

This ongoing frustration often comes up in my creative expression. I need to get it all out somehow, so that it doesn't eat me up inside and erode my personal identity. Surely it is not too much to ask that I can be myself, the me I have always been.

But though many battles are lost, the war is not over yet.

Friday, 30 March 2012

Which planet am I landing on?

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 12" x 9.5".

Confusion was the main inspiration behind this painting. For so long people had been desperately trying to tell me I was wrong, but I never understood why. I didn't see that I could be wrong, and it seemed that nobody around me could see that I could be right. I'll not go any further into philosophy here, as I mentioned it in my previous post.

Times have changed a lot since then. Now it is not so often that I come up against the accusations and the confusion as to why everyone is so keen to prove me wrong. So maybe this means that I have landed on the right planet, at least some of the time anyway.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

A bit of philosophy

Space is a big place. Many planets. So how can we know when we have landed on the right one?

OK so that might make no sense to most people, but I wanted to open with something about space that also brings up the question that has been on my mind quite a lot over the last year or so. I often refer to the journey I have been on these last few years as a journey through space, trying to find the right planet (hence the name of this blog). This has been even more so in the last year.

But seriously, how can we actually know that we are on the right planet? How can we know that we are not lost in space?

The big question that has been a part of my journey, particularly over the last year, is 'what exactly is reality?'. Maybe some of you have picked up something along these lines from my paintings and poems that I have posted so far here, and there will be more to come in the future. There have been times of much confusion along my journey, where I really have felt that I was lost in space and desperate to return home. And also times of much certainty, when I would refuse to accept my friends telling me that I was not on the planet I so much thought I was on.

These days things aren't so bad. I'm settled here on what I mostly think is planet Earth. But I equally know that I cannot be certain of where I am. There are times on this journey that I decide to turn back, because I believe that I have been sent in the wrong direction.

It annoys me when one person decides that they are the one who knows all of reality and we should all listen to them, because everybody who disagrees is wrong. For many years I thought I was that person, but getting through to the world around me was something that I never managed to figure out how to do. I'm glad that I no longer believe this as it has definitely taken one of my worries away from me. But most people (and I do realise it is just human nature) will claim that they are the ones who have the answers - 'what I believe is the true reality'.

But truth is nobody can know.

Funnily enough, my own belief that I was the one who knew all reality and everyone should listen to me turned out to be a delusion. What I so much thought was the reality I needed to share with everyone (if only I could work out how to get through to them) turned out to be me stuck in the middle of a psychotic episode.

So how stupid do I feel now, knowing all that? Answer is quite a lot.

But the question still remains, as it will always do. I am not saying we are all psychotic, but we do tend to always trust our own views over those of the people around us. I must admit I hate being proven wrong, and the more convinced I was over something the more I hate when people say I am wrong. But I do have a point here. How can those who say something is wrong or untrue know this for certain?

I wonder if we do all experience delusions to some extent, just not significant enough to cause us problems. And nobody likes to be proven wrong. When people accuse me of getting it wrong, my tendency is to find more evidence (whether real or imaginary) to prove that actually I am right. So can't I suggest that this is a completely normal behaviour? Well it certainly seems logical.

I don't think that anyone can know 'true reality' (whatever that is). The question will always be there. We are all doomed to be always lost in space, whether trying to find Earth (well assuming that Earth is the right planet) or happy on whatever planet we find ourselves on.

I hope I haven't confused everyone too much!

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Demon Possession

Acrylic on canvas, 2011, 15" x 8".

For a long time I believed that I was demon possessed, and this painting is a representation of that. These days I am pleased to say that I no longer feel the same.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

The Abyss

I am finally back, so here is a picture.

Acrylic on canvas, 2010, 12" x 15.75".

Following on a similar theme from 'Infestation', that I posted here in December. At the time of painting, I really felt that I was being taken over by what I can only describe as a mind controlling parasite. The feelings of my thoughts not being my own was horrible, and created a sense of desperation. It was this experience that landed me at the doctor's surgery in early 2011, desperate for a pill to make it go away (if such a thing even existed, and I wasn't particularly convinced to be honest). Well the good news is that it did exist, and I no longer experience the thought control.

I will post some more recent paintings when I get round to taking photos of them. After all, though I was stuck at this particular point on my journey for a long time, I have moved much further on over the last year or so.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Need a break

This is going to be my last post for a while. Things are getting too much at this point in time, so I have decided to take a break from blogging.

I hope 2012 is going better for you than it is for me.