Nathalie Lalande

Growing up, I didn’t have the best childhood. I was the girl who got picked on a lot. I didn’t fit in with the crowd, I was one to do my own thing and I was happy about that. Most kids would come home after school and start their homework. I was not one of those kids. in order to cope with whatever I had gone through that day, my outlet was to paint. Downstairs in our basement, I had set up a little painting table full of messy paint brushes and lined paper to paint my hearts out until I couldn’t paint anymore. Growing up, I didn’t realize that I used art as a form of therapy. I didn’t realize that I used it to cope with whatever hardships were going on in my life. I was bullied and picked on a lot, not to mention my home life wasn’t stable. I found happiness in my paintings. I found stability and my desire to be creative through my artwork. I would often beg my art teachers to let me do more or stay behind and spend time with them during recess. Since then, art has helped shape who I am. During college, everyone has free electives that they can use for whatever courses they would like. I so desired to make sure every single free class I had was filled with any sort of art class I could get a hold of. This sometimes took getting recommendations and permission from some professors to be a part of these courses. Today, I still love to paint as a part of therapy but I also have grown to appreciate the history behind art as well. Art has helped me get through a lot of depression, hardships, and moments in my life where I need some stability. If I could thank anything, I would thank myself 18 years ago for picking up a paint brush for the first time. Or my grandmother for buying me obnoxiously large painting kits. I don’t think I would be the person I am today without it.