Safe Places

At my last session, my therapist gave me a number of things to think about. I did one of them earlier this week in thinking about how it would feel to enjoy a shower. One of the other things she asked me to think about was creating a safe place to go in my head.

I was having trouble putting my ideas into words last night so I found my soft pastels (under a pile of music that needs to be practiced) and drew a bit.

I came up with two images. Surprisingly, they turned out better than I thought they would (art has never been my strong point… I had to drop the art class I was taking in high school because I was flunking it). I’m still working on titles for these two pieces, but words are just escaping me now.


What I was trying to depict (and it sort of looks inside out) was a tree inside a garden (not pictured) surrounded by a stone wall. But it looks more like a tree outside of the walled in garden.

But the important part of the picture is that wall. I was imagining a huge wall made of old stones. It would keep danger out.


And I originally planned for it to be a day scene. But the blue I picked turned out to be much darker than I thought it was (apparently my color perception was off last night along with most of my other mental processes). So I changed the sun to look more like a moon.

Interestingly enough, it looks better scanned in than it does on paper. Go figure…


For some reason, lately I’ve been fascinated by nature. Actually I’ve been so cold (and tired of the snow) that maybe this was sort of a daydream on my part. A beautiful spring day. Just lying on the hill under the tree. Maybe take a picnic for one. It would be completely isolated from everything and everybody. Nothing to over-stimulate me.

It just is a place where I would want to be alone. To listen to the birds sing. To watch the butterflies flutter by. To hear the bees buzzing around. To smell the sweet perfume of the flowers.


On a side note, I really like working with soft pastels. My fingers get really dirty. In a way, it’s almost liberating. I had to be so neat and clean growing up. I had to behave like a perfect young lady, even when other kids my age were outside playing and getting messy and experiencing the world. It’s almost like reclaiming a small part of what I missed out on when I was a child.

4 thoughts on “Safe Places

  1. i quite like your art, especially the stone wall picture. stone walls are not always straight and flat but sometimes have round curves, so even though the wall appears to be directed away from the reader’s view, it still carries the possibility of the viewer being inside the walled area.

    it is quite lovely, your drawing.

  2. I love the tree and the wall!
    I don’t think you should just ignore the fact that you were trying to draw a tree inside a garden surrounded by a stone wall but instead drew a tree outside of the walled in garden.
    Take it along to your therapist and see what they think?
    Drawing I’ve always found is a lot like ghost writing for the mind. All sorts of stuff spills out that we didn’t consciously intend. A lot of symbols and jungian gubbins. It’s why the Tarot has such an enduring fascination for people.

    Anyway…great drawing. You should do a widescreen version and use it for your blog header image!

  3. Both lovely images… and oddly enough both remind me of C. S. Lewis’s Narnia Chronicles.

    I like gloomferret’s speculation about the inside / outside thing…

  4. I think your blog is amazing. I recently started my own website for sex assault survivors. I was wondering if you would like me to link to your site? I would also appreciate if you would link to my site. The address is

    Thanks so much,


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