December 4, 2018

I started drawing consistently after attending therapy my junior year of college. I used to doodle here and there as a child, but I did not realize at the time how much it would help me get through some of the roughest years of my life. I suffered (and still suffer) from anxiety and depression, and after attending therapy, I was advised to turn to something outside of school and work that brings me joy. Aside from working out, writing, and spending time with friends and family, art became my release.

As far as skills are concerned, I learned the groundwork for henna and mandalas by watching women in my temple and the ladies of my family do henna. I taught myself the ropes and started with floral designs on paper, and have graduated since then to drawing mandalas and designs of the like not only on paper, but on wood, canvases, cardboard slabs, and as wall murals as well. Throughout the years, I have started to experiment with different paints and add-on designs, and I have also designed various tattoos as well.

This project of mine started in 2014, and I did not anticipate it growing as much as it has, but I am grateful. For the future, I am hopeful that in improving my craft, I can not only continue to use it as a release for my depression, but as a means to bring joy in other people’s lives as well.

-M. P.