Friday, this HowardCenter patient, who we'll call "John" at the request of his care providers, is brushing up on his new hobby.
"Basically what I'm doing is drawing a tree here, nice big line here and part of a trunk here," John said. "Paintings I just find nice."
"When you start making art, the mental illness takes a break; something else takes over," said Bryant Pugh, John's residential counselor from the HowardCenter.
Pugh struggles with anxiety and depression. He found painting helped and has been introducing clients to it as part of their therapy.
"I've seen John open up so much since he started painting with me, when I've seen him draw more focus to the attention to detail in his paintings than I ever have in any other activity that he has done," Pugh said.
HowardCenter staff and client work will be on display at the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. The exhibit opening is Sunday, 3-5 p.m., but the work will remain up through the end of July.
"To open up that door, for someone to walk into a room and see this art, whether it was created from something that was painful or a good experience or it's a healing experience, it's something that really just opens up their life," Pugh said.
It only takes John a couple of minutes before he declares his second-ever piece finished-- a dramatic shift from his first abstract work entitled "Ocean." Blues and greens represent the sea, a block of orange the sun.
"What I'd like to do is take a course in learning how to paint, so I can do better paintings. That's what I want to do," John said.
Like any artist, he's not content with good enough.
About 60 works are expected to be on display, including paintings and photographs.
Tuesday, March 11 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-03-11 23:56:46 GMT
"You know, people say you might not need it, which is true, but this way you get a choice. I don't have to go out tomorrow," said Lorinda Henry of Milton. Henry says she hit the grocery stores TuesdayMore >>
Parts of Vermont could get up to 24 inches of snow in the coming storm. And VTrans officials are warning drivers they may not be able to keep up with the storm rolling in Wednesday.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 8:02 PM EDT2014-03-12 00:02:07 GMT
"Seems like it was just yesterday. Doesn't seem like it's been two years at all," said Glenda Reandeau of Tupper Lake. Residents of Tupper Lake still have their eyes out for Colin Gillis, a now 20-year-oldMore >>
Colin Gillis of Tupper Lake, N.Y., disappeared two years ago. And authorities are still searching for him. They say the investigation now focuses on tips from the public and from those who were the last to see Gillis.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 6:17 PM EDT2014-03-11 22:17:43 GMT
A Rutland City Police officer is recovering at home after a crash involving his cruiser. Authorities say Officer Adam Lucia was one of two officers responding to an aggravated assault call Monday at TopsMore >>
A Rutland City Police officer is recovering at home after a crash involving his cruiser.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 11:49 AM EDT2014-03-11 15:49:17 GMT
A Plattsburgh woman faces charges for allegedly attacking someone with a knife. New York State Police were called to the Best Value Inn on Booth Drive Sunday night for a report of a domestic dispute. InvestigatorsMore >>
A Plattsburgh woman faces charges for allegedly attacking someone with a knife.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 10:14 AM EDT2014-03-11 14:14:46 GMT
A Winooski man says he was held at knife point on Church Street in Burlington Monday afternoon as robbers took nearly 300 dollars from him. Police arrested 29-year-olds Andre Martel and Anthony HammondMore >>
A Winooski man says he was held at knife point on Church Street Monday afternoon as robbers took nearly $300 from him.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 10:01 AM EDT2014-03-11 14:01:29 GMT
A South Londonderry man captured at the end of a high-speed chase now faces up to life in prison. Police say Christopher Bush topped speeds of 100-miles-per-hour in a stolen SUV. The 27 year old pleadedMore >>
A South Londonderry man captured at the end of a high-speed chase now faces up to life in prison.More >>