Description This painting may feel a little darker than some I have done, but it's really not meant to be. It's more a reflection on the mental illness my daughter faces. She has Borderline Personality Disorder. To sum it up in a few words, it's an emotional disturbance. Every emotion she feels is 100 times more intense....which can be good for the positive emotions, but very bad for the not so wonderful ones, especially guilt. More borderlines kill themselves because of the guilt they feel than anything else. The problem is, once a borderline is well enough mentally to be self aware, the guilt kicks in and has to be overcome. They feel no one could ever really love them becasue they have done so many things wrong in the past when they were very ill. The hearts near the cottage represent our love as a family poured out on Ashley, over and over. Even though she is on the darker side of the painting, you see her begin to accept that love and understand she deserves it. She is on the road to recovery, but recently I saw just how hard it is for her. When she says she doesn't understand why I love her. It hurts to hear, but it is how she feels. How many ways can you tell a child you love them? I don't know, but I say an infinite amount:) Even if you haven't faced or know someone with mental illness, I think everyone can relate to the feeling of guilt and just wanting to be loved. It's what we all want.
Juli Cady Ryan, Cincinnati, Ohio Member Since July 2007 Artist Statement Juli Cady Ryan was born in La Porte, IN and after attending Indiana University for three years, she then moved to Cincinnati with her husband to raise their family. She is a self-taught artist and she works exclusively in acrylics. Her love of painting began as a hobby in 2004, but then she fell in love with it. Once she was able to sell her art on Ebay, painting became her career. Her paintings have always been bright and hopeful, but they took on a new direction after her daughter's struggle with mental illness and then later her two sons' struggles. She then decided she wanted to share her family's journey of pain, hope and recovery. Juli wanted to make mental illness a subject that could be talked about, not stigmatized, so people suffering wouldn't be afraid to reach out for help. Juli's art has been in several galleries, the latest a solo exhibition in the Portal Gallery at the Fuller Lodge Art Center in Los Alamos, NM. She was also interviewed by their local radio staion, KRSN. Juli is an author and illustrator of two books, one a children's bedtime story, The Sleep Fairy and Her Magic Sheep, the other book, Wounds of Wisdom, shares her family's struggle with mental illness through her paintings and poetry. Both can be found on Amazon.com.
Today, Juli lives in Cincinnati, OH with her husband, Sean and her two black cat, Lordie and Francis. Her children are all grown and also live in Cincinnati. Juli hopes to continue painting and sharing her family's story to be a voice for mental illness.