Creating Art to Heal our Hearts – How I Managed to Deal with Pain

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A shot of an artist's studio, showing different paintings and materials. | A way to heal through art.

For sale: baby shoes, never worn. This famous sentence, ascribed to Ernest Hemingway is a story inside itself. Unfortunately, I know all too well what this feeling is like. My experience with loss is the reason I create. And this is how I heal.

Creating Art to Heal 

An OB-GYN visit confirmed my baby was a boy. We prepared for his arrival joyously. However, his little life was cut short. I suffered a stillborn miscarriage at eight months. Instead of welcoming him to our family, I said goodbye. I held him as if he was still alive and smelled his new baby scent. 

Art has therapeutic benefits. For many experiencing trauma, loss, as well as grief, art allows individuals to be still with their emotions. Art also allows for a transformation of unspeakable pain. A form of unlocking occurs, opening up the movement as well as the release of sad memories. I have experienced exactly this in my studio. Working with paint as well as special engravings. A form of catharsis occurs. I am able to be comforted knowing that my baby is in good hands, sleeping in peace with other baby angels. The precious thoughts and memories of him in my belly, our hearts beating together, synchronized. 

I am an artist in his honor. In fact, after such a profound loss, it feels freeing to bring beautiful art into this world as well as to make something out of nothing. I spend time in the studio, inspired by him as well as all the love in the world. I am transforming my pain through painting symbols of life; butterflies, whales, birds, and more. I create art to heal my heart, and hopefully yours. Please visit my shop and find out more.

In Loving Memory of Christopher K. Lewis  Jr. — May 26, 2010.

Creating After Loss Helped Heal My Heart

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Hand of a female woman dipping a paintbrush in a glass. | Showing art expression after experiencing loss.

My daughter is my most precious joy, but her space in my heart is shared by my angelic son, Christopher. Here is where I got my inspiration for creating art after I experienced a tragic loss.

Creating Art After Loss

It’s been 11 years since I lost him, but he is still dear to my heart and will be forever. My baby boy went to be with the Lord when I was eight months pregnant. When I delivered him, we realized that he had a blood clot in the umbilical cord, and his little mouth was open. That’s a sight that no mother should ever have to see, and I will never forget.

I will always remember how it felt to hold him in my arms and smell his new baby scent that usually brings joy. But to me only brought sorrow on that day.

Losing him was so hard to bear. But I know that he’s at peace in Heaven with all of the other angel babies. Knowing that lightens my burden, but I still grieve for him and I always will. I believe that the connection between a mother and her child is everlasting. That love starts from the moment their heart starts beating, and I loved him with everything in me.

Even though his heart stopped beating too soon, his memory still beats in tune with my own heart. No matter what, I will always cherish the memories I have of him, his little kicks and jumps and cravings, and I know that one day I will be reunited with my first and only son.

I coped with his loss by creating art. My work has helped me process my grief and heal from it. I believe art has beauty in it because art is a representation of life, of the joys and sorrows that life brings. Being able to express my sorrow through my art has helped me to have a scar where there was once a gaping wound, and for that I am thankful.

More About My Art

I find peace in my art and comfort in knowing that I can express my emotions in beautiful, meaningful pieces. Click here to see my works.

In Loving Memory of:

Christopher K. Lewis Jr.

May 26, 2010.

Mommy misses you.

Through Love and Art: Healing from Abuse

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Female painter holding a paintbrush and palette with different colors of paint.

A loving heart can bear the sorrows of life. I am strong again. I have a voice again. Abuse takes many shapes and is meted out by many hands. It is also a raging storm that inflicts more than just physical damage. It is a cage as well as a burden.

My past abusers took all that I had. I was weighed down by their oppression, but the Lord saw fit to lift me up. He empowered my eight-year-old daughter to raise her voice in my defense, saving me from certain death at the hands of my abuser. I should have named her Angel. It was her voice that saved my life—the voice of an angel!!! She pleaded—no, she demanded, “Don’t hurt my mommy!” And I am here today, alive, and continuing on my journey towards empowerment as well as creating beautiful art.

Healing from Abuse

Art can be healing—it is transformative, it requires focus, heart, as well as guts. With art, you put yourself out there, it makes one vulnerable. But I embrace this vulnerability, it is my choice and my strength. I have learned to love myself, to know that I am worthy of love. It is also through this transformation that I can give love to others who are dealing with similar struggles. Perhaps recounting both my abuse as well as recovery will enable others to discover their own strengths.

It is only half true that “time heals all wounds.” The path to recovery is an arduous one. But having a passion or creative outlet can help make the process bearable. I was given a second chance, and I am grateful that I have a voice to share my experiences. My heart and mind are light as a bird; my life is full of sunshine, and my purpose is renewed through my daughter. Returning to the darkness is not an option—I refuse to go.

I Survived the Storm: How Creating Art Has Helped Me Through

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Painter's tools on a wooden-table palette showing different colors of paint and paintbrushes.

In the now distant past, an angelic voice called out to my abuser: “Do not hurt my Mommy!” That angelic voice was from the lips of my eight-year-old daughter. I should have named her Angel. That is what she is to me, an angel. Because of her call, I was saved from a storm, the fate of a death where my remains would have been hidden away forever by the hands of my abuser.

How I Survived the Storm

I lived in an abusive situation. During that time a storm came brought forth by my abuser and did its damage. So, my heart lived in a cage. I had a key to enter the cage. Once inside the cage, the key changed. I no longer had a key to get out. Deep inside my soul, I cried out. I had no voice to explain my feelings, what I was going through. There seemed to be no end to the pain from the one who hurt me.

The day my daughter used her angelic voice, I found another key to open the cage. I left the cage and flew away. Now, I’m like a bird soaring through the air, kissing the winds with my wingtips. Sunshine fills my life after God had protected me on that fateful day.  

I begin the journey of healing by loving myself. My loving heart bears the sorrows of life and makes me strong again. Now I have a voice to speak up, share with others who also struggle with the same obstacle I overcame, and I love them too. I survived the storm. I am alive, happy, and grateful. Today I can continue on my journey of creating beautiful art. I can do this all because my daughter spoke up for me and saved my life.

See the beauty I have the privilege to bring into this world through doing my art by contacting me. I’m happy to answers any questions about my art.  

Expressing Emotions Through Art

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Woman's hand holding a paintbrush to express her emotions through painting.

My daughter is the key to my life. She helped me love myself again, and she saved me from my abuser. Even when the storm came in, and tore me from inside out, she was there to save me. I should have called her Angel because her voice was of one, so sweet and pure to my life. Here is how I got the inspiration of creating beautiful art through my emotions. 

You see, in the beginning, there seems to be no end to being hurt by my abusers. They put up cages where I could not get out. When I cried out, they tried to silence me. When I tried to get out, they sought to kill me. It was only because of the sweet angel that said, “Don’t hurt my Mommy” and the Lord protected me. 

Today, there are still the hurts and sorrows that come from being in an abusive relationship. But now, I hold the key to get out of the cages that surround me. I feel as though I am a bird, soaring in the full sunshine. I am thankful that I have a voice to share with others who experienced the same. 

Maybe this is why I create art of birds and animals. Their freedom from cages, their flights, and their feathers enthrall me and others. The music of children’s voices, so innocent and pure, lift me up and give thanks for being alive. 

Art is a way to express these emotions. There is a permanence within my art. Especially when you have engravings that carve this way and that. You put those emotions into each curve, creating them lovingly, and then express that love to the world. 

I put that love into my art. By using my voice and art to help others, I can continue on my journey and create beautiful art. This way I have a true love for others who deal with the same struggles. By loving myself I can help others love themselves again. My loving heart can bear the sorrows and make me strong once more. Check out my heartfelt and beautiful art.  

Creating Beautiful Art to Overcome Pain

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Female artist holding a brush and paint palette to express her pain through art.

Pain seems to be part and parcel of human life. What is it really like to experience and overcome pain? And is there really a limit to being hurt? Well, these are controversial issues. People have unique ways of dealing with pain. Creating beautiful art happens to be one of them, and Jessica Unique Art shop got you on this.

What’s My Story?

Anyone who’s suffered any kind of abuse seems to feel that there’s no end to being hurt. I can compare it to living in a cage that has a way in but no way out. Living in an abusive situation or relationship is challenging. You feel like you have no voice to really explain how you feel. I mean, people tend to think they really understand what you are going through, but they don’t.  My abuser almost killed me were it not for my eight-year-old daughter. I thank God for her saving voice. I should have named her angel because, for sure, it was the voice of an angel. And I survived.

The Passing Storm

The storm came and passed. After all, life does not stop even with the worst happenings around. Today, I am more than happy to share with others what I have overcome. Overcoming pain means loving yourself first to have a genuine love for others dealing with the same struggles in life.

Creating Beautiful Art

Isn’t art just wonderful? It is a unique way of communication. It expresses the feelings, thoughts, as well as observations of the artist. Having overcome the storm, I still have a life to continue on my journey to create beautiful art. It’s what I enjoy doing.  

Bottom Line

I have original artwork as well as unique engravings. If you deeply connected with my story, so will you with my art. Check it out on my website and blog. You can also contact us for additional information and inquiries.

Unique Art – The Secret to an Artist’s Thankful Heart

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There’s a secret to why I smile when I create unique art. Why every time I pick up a paintbrush there’s a feeling of gratitude that follows. Do you want to know the secret behind my smile, why I’m thankful for the unique art I create? When I was three years old, I almost lost […]

Unique Art – The Secret to an Artist’s Thankful Heart

Artist Profile: Getting to Know Jessica Washington-Lewis

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“As a child, I really enjoyed drawing pictures of everything that God created.” Nothing could describe Jessica’s artistic sensibility more vividly. Her work is free-spirited, addressing a wide range of subjects and mediums in a unique and flowing style that is both optimistic and mysterious. To understand her work though, it helps to understand who […]

Artist Profile: Getting to Know Jessica Washington-Lewis

A Grateful Smile: Reason Behind My Artworks

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Artist brushes and oil paints on wooden palette for painting artworks.

When I spend time in my studio working hard to create beautiful artworks I carry a happy, grateful smile on my face. I do this because there was a time when my future ability to do art was temporarily threatened by an accident that happened to me at the age of three. Luckily, God had other plans for me that day. He wanted me to become the artist I am today. I am most grateful. 

During that time, my brother and I were playing together in his room. At some point, I decided to hide behind the door. Because I did that, my brother thought I had left. As I waited for my brother to come to find me, I gripped the door’s edge. Not aware I was hiding behind the door, my brother came over and slammed it shut. My right thumb got caught in the door. Shocked, I screamed! Quickly, my brother opened the door. My right thumb was freed. Unfortunately, my right thumb was hanging by a thin piece of skin.

Luckily we made it to the hospital in time. In fact, the doctor exclaimed that because I was so young my bone would fuse back together again. I was able to keep my thumb as well as got the surgery. My thumb was good as new after it healed. I am so thankful that I still have my thumb to continue doing what I admire most. Making art. And that is the story behind my grateful smile.

Please, enjoy these beautiful artworks in all their unique splendor. I am happy to share them. Find these pieces for purchase at the online art shop. Go ahead and shop around. Find the piece that makes you smile. Feel free to contact me with any questions. 

Unique Art – The Secret to an Artist’s Thankful Heart

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There’s a secret to why I smile when I create unique art. Why every time I pick up a paintbrush there’s a feeling of gratitude that follows. Do you want to know the secret behind my smile, why I’m thankful for the unique art I create? When I was three years old, I almost lost […]

Unique Art – The Secret to an Artist’s Thankful Heart

Unique Art – The Secret to an Artist’s Thankful Heart

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Set of watercolor paints, brushes for painting and paper sheet of painting on old wooden background.

There’s a secret to why I smile when I create unique art. Why every time I pick up a paintbrush there’s a feeling of gratitude that follows. Do you want to know the secret behind my smile, why I’m thankful for the unique art I create?

When I was three years old, I almost lost my thumb. Shocker, isn’t it? Now let me explain how this happened. While playing a game with my brother I had decided to hide behind the door. Elated that he couldn’t find me, I had placed my hand right behind the door. Right in the crack of the door. My brother not noticing my hand and not being able to find me slams it on my thumb.

I’m sure you can imagine what happened next. I can still remember the pain from the door closing on my hand. And how immediately my brother opened it, startled from the sound of my scream. But by then it was too late, my right thumb was already hanging on by a small thread of skin. Now I bet you’re wondering if I lost my thumb? Well luckily for me, I was able to get to surgery quick enough. My doctor informed us that because I was young enough my bones would mend back together.

Now, how’s that a secret to my unique art, to my smile? And why does it make it unique? It makes my art unique because I know that the Lord created me to share my art. The memory of almost losing my thumb was kind of like reaffirming to me, that this is the path I’m meant to take. And for that I am grateful, and I smile because of it.

I smile when creating my art, and it’s unique because of this secret, and now you know. If this story made you smile, so will my art. Go check it out here.

Creating Art in 2021

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Close up photo of an artist's paintbrush painting a blue paint over a canvas.

Creating art is a passion for me, and it always has been. One of the reasons I’m so passionate about art is that my talent has helped heal me from past and present abuse. I never knew how strong I was until being strong was the only choice I had. Because of this, I have a clearer vision for helping people who have the same or similar trauma as I do. Art helps people cope with trauma and heal from abuse.

2021: A New Year of Art

This year, I’m making an effort to leave the pain of my past behind, because when I walk back through it, I can’t always see clearly. Instead, I strive to be mindful of my past trauma when creating art. I use the creative process as a healing ritual and a way to express both positive and negative feelings I may have. I attribute the success I’ve had in overcoming hardships to art, and without this artistic outlet, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I have a creative mind that loves to learn, adventure, and get the most out of the life I was given. As I gain more insight into who I am as a person and an artist, I know that I can continue to grow, develop, and gain wisdom along the way.

In my mind, I have made a conscious decision to leave my past pain behind. In my heart, I pour unconditional love into the art I create. Even as I slowly come to terms with a dark past full of hurt, I know that love yields sunshine, and art will heal my wounds and my heart. I work hard to make sure that each of my customers receives a work of art filled with love and joy. As the oft-covered song goes – it’s a new day, It’s a new life for me, and I’m feeling good!

To learn more about the art I create, get in touch!

Artist Profile: Getting to Know Jessica Washington-Lewis

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Artist's different paintbrushes on top of different paint colors.

“As a child, I really enjoyed drawing pictures of everything that God created.”

Nothing could describe Jessica’s artistic sensibility more vividly. Her work is free-spirited, addressing a wide range of subjects and mediums in a unique and flowing style that is both optimistic and mysterious. To understand her work though, it helps to understand who Jessica is.

The Beginnings of an Artist

Jessica knew she wanted to be an artist when she was only five years old. She got her first taste of success when she won the Fall Weather Window picture contest at her elementary school in 1987.

In middle school, she participated in the Alabama Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest, a prestigious award for emerging artistic talent where she placed third out of the entire state. The feeling of bringing her artistic vision to life and sharing it with an audience is a feeling that’s stayed with her to this very day.

After high school, she entertained the idea of going to art school but took a small detour instead.

Serving Her Country

Coming out of high school Jessica took steps to ensure that her future would be a successful one. She joined the United States Army, serving as a communications specialist for five years before being discharged.

After completing her service, Jessica made good on her dream of art school. In 2015, she formally enrolled in the Art Instruction School in Minneapolis. During her tenure there, Jessica received the Award for Basic Art Studies and her Certificate of Completion in 2019.

Living Her Dreams

Jessica is excited to announce the launch of her product line, Jessica’s Unique Art Shop, an e-commerce storefront where she offers engravings, paintings, and printed merchandise featuring her signature designs.

To Jessica, art is more than just a product though. She is actively engaged in multiple therapy programs aimed at veterans, including the VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System’s Intimate Partner Violence Assistance program where she has submitted her work for the last four years. For her, art is part of life’s healing process.

When asked what artistic direction she wants to move in next, Jessica replied, “I am essentially interested in creating works that call for the participation of the audience to the same extent as my involvement in it.”

If you’d like to see more of Jessica’s uniquely beautiful artwork, please visit her at Jessica’s Unique Art Shop.