Anger erupting onto canvas, beginning a new journey

New abstract painting project by Los Angeles artist Wessel

All I wanted to do was paint the canvas with a thick heavy layer of black acrylic and watch it drip onto the ground.

The feelings so muddled, dark slime seething around my head, blocking my eyes, filling my ears, stuffing my nose, gagging my mouth. Each attempt to break through filled with unimaginable frustration. Every time I closed my eyes to see, all there was in my minds eye was void.

How do I express, no, how do I work through these feelings with art? Years of trauma to deal with, feelings to be recognized and managed, a life to regain after years of living death. That was the question I posed to myself as I ended my last series really long series. A small canvas, black paint, a razor, cutting through... How does one create to heal?

 New abstract painting project by Los Angeles artist Wessel

I’ve always heard of art as therapy, but now that I find myself an artist, in many ways I feel lost.

The feelings I have are, well, deep. A gash running from top to the bottom of my being, all I feel is pain. But, again how do I take all that and put it into a form that I can use to heal? Just black ain’t gonna do it.

Right now I use the rawest of emotion, and words. Yes, literally words. I paint them on my canvas, almost puking them out with gobs of paint, and then beat the shit out of them in an attempt to get them out, to kill them, to rob them of their power. The pain that I run from, I let bubble out, no, rush out, not hiding from any of it, experiencing it to its fullest. I turn that pure black into something a little more, nuanced. I try to see what is really going on.

 New abstract painting project by Los Angeles artist Wessel

The feelings I have, the ones that are keeping me down, away, out of the game, aren’t simple.

That black paint I want to spew is not an expression, but an escape from what I really need to look at. A horrible generalization for feelings/ideas/concepts that are way more complex that I can currently conceive. I need to look, and look close, to see the strands that weave what has happened together, and work to unravel them bit by bit.

My process of healing, of rising to my potential as a creative, is going to be a very long and frustrating path, of that I have no doubt. I have no clear answer as to how I’m going to use art as therapy other then just trying to figure it out as I go. Everyone experiences and expressed differently so trying to follow a path others have forged doesn’t make sense to me, and hasn’t worked in the past when I tried. The important part, I feel, is just paying attention to myself and doing what feels right to me. 

Hopefully that will help, hehe.

Thanks for dropping by and reading!


New abstract painting project by Los Angeles artist Wessel

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