So many peers with mental health diagnoses find some sort of catharsis in art. I have always loved to draw and have worked in the photography industry — more recently, I’ve gotten into multimedia art journaling. I particularly find it interesting to see how my art changes with my mood (I have Bipolar 1, along with other co-occuring conditions). Therefore I was delighted to see this post by Yvette Caster for metro.co.uk highlighting the graphic novel work of Brent Williams, and how it transformed his life when he had hit rock bottom.
From Out Of The Woods: A Journey Through Depression And Anxiety (Picture: Korkut Oztekin/Brent Williams)
Williams talked about how depression and anxiety transformed his life on Metro.co.uk’s weekly mental health podcast Mentally Yours. He went from working as a busy human rights lawyer, educator and family man to self-imposed isolation brought on by mental illness.
He explained: ‘When I was really depressed I couldn’t read – I just couldn’t take in information and I thought whatever I do it’s got to be very visual.
‘And the things that made me face my depression when I was able to read were people’s personal stories.’
Brent also talked about how he went on to rebuild his life and relationships, reconnect with his children and how the graphic novel helped them and others understand what had happened to him.