"Mental health awareness week special"
In this episode We talk to Emz Finch
Emz is a contemporary artist, living and working from her home studio in South West London. Her work is strongly influenced by nature and the great outdoors, having grown up on a National Trust farm on the Stourhead estate. She has a particular interest in impressionism and likes to make paintings that focus on bold colour and a striking marks. Emz has painted all her life, and after a successful career in the city and then in TV, she took it up professionally after having her daughter in 2017. Since then, Emz has completed a foundation at the London Fine Art Studios, won a scholarship to the Creative Visionary Programme 2019 and sells work online and through First View Gallery in Wiltshire.
Emz has been disabled all her adult life following a failed hip replacement when she was just 18. Painting is has played a huge part in her mental health and acceptance of the disability. It allows her the space to feel herself again and has helped a huge deal to come to terms with life with reduced mobility.
I’ve had two miscarriages during lockdown. Both at 12 weeks. Both ending in operations, the first one an emergency op after hours of trauma in hospital alone. I came away from this with no indication that my mental health might be effected, and absolutely no follow up or support when I reached out to the hospital to tell them about the debilitating flashbacks I’d be having. I was diagnosed with PTSD and waited 6 months for CBT therapy, then sadly had another miscarriage at the end of Feb this year. I had an experience in my local woods one day when I saw a pebble in a tree that said ‘be happy’, the trees compelled me to lay under the tree and within seconds I was breathing deeply. I started to feel better, started to see colour again and the only way I could describe what had happened was to paint it. That was the first tree, nearly 10 weeks ago. And I now have over 80 trees in my studio. You can see a few of them on my instagram feed. I’ll need several hundred to realise my dream of creating this space - a space for everyone to come and lay down and reflect on what they may have lost during lockdown.
In the short term, I need some money to buy more paint and canvasses, so I’ll be selling art prints of two of the trees for one week 10th - 16th May (mental health awareness week - which this year has the theme of nature). Anything you can do to share my project during this week would be so amazing.
In the medium to long term I need to find a venue and a sponsor/philanthropist/grants/gallery/charity to be able to put this on. I’m trying to speak to as many people as I can at the moment to see what leads I can generate.
#gardening #trees #gardening-podcast #horticulture #nature #flowers #podcast #herbs #vegetables #mentalhealth #wellbeing #outdoors #forestbathing
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