Painted Brain Gets Pinterest-y!

On February 15, 2017, Painted Brain held a workshop at our headquarters. Led by one of our interns from Project Return Peer Support Network (PRPSN), participants were led through the process of setting up a Pinterest account, posting articles, videos, fave photos, and more. Many participants were new to Pinterest. By the end of the workshop, everyone had a Pinterest account set up, and has already created a few boards and posted a few articles videos and photos from Google Images, Flickr, and such.


The Pinterest workshop is the first in a series of social media marketing workshops to be held as an umbrella of the Painted Brain Academy project. We have in the past provided workshops in:

Peer Leader Training,

Public Speaking,


Journalistic writing,

and Social Media.

We’re working on turning it into a year-round program.


What the caterpillar calls the end of the world…



What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls the butterfly is a quote from Richard Bach’s wonderful book called Illusions. There are a number of quotes from this book that I use everyday to reorder my thinking positively.  This one speaks to paradigm shifting and perspective.

It’s really brilliant.  It uses something we all understand – metamorphosis – to focus us on a different perspective of endings and beginnings.  For the caterpillar it is the end of life – for the butterfly it is the beginning of life but for that entity it is a change in how life is experienced.

The Death and Tower cards in the Tarot – a form of divination  – are often interpreted in this fashion that an ending is also a beginning.  The death card can be interpreted as an end that leads to a NEW beginning.  The tower…

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WordCraft Workshop celebrates 1yr Anniversary!

Check out the latest featured poems!

To see our full poetry gallery visit here.

The Enigma Within the Enigma

by Sandy Weisberg 

Is this really me and not a dream –

As my rabbi tried to explain
that this reality is the dream

and that reality with God

is not a dream, but just
the mystery engulfed within
the mystery we call life,

liberty and the pursuit of happiness –

The soft velvet touch of a baby’s cheek,

the cry of a lobster boiling

in a pot of bubbly water,

a woman’s stretching sigh.

UCLA Arts & Healing


I’ve been to three conferences this year. Why do I go to all these conferences? Why is healing important? How do I find mental health in music, art and writing?

It was a good conference. I took a workshop in singing, and one on creating cards that speak and one on voice that listens. DMH footed the bill. Why? Why is it important that people who are unemployed, without transportation, work histories, credit and sometimes homes and cellphones get to go to the LAX Hilton to be out of space with MFAs and PHDs with MACs and Kale Lunches and Smart Phones?

Art is a lot like society, I think. It’s starts with the doodles, and ends with opera, includes the actors and the gaffers and the people coughing in their recliners. There are no homeless in the orchestra. There is no “White Only” sign. This opera is the lyric…

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Fun Times with Melted Crayons

A new and exciting way to get the most of our your crayon stubs!  Women’s Day  is producing colorful works of art through recycling of what would be considered waste.  You know the broken or stubby crayons that you never use?  There is a beautiful way to put them to use and it is really easy.  All one needs is wax paper or any canvas you feel comfortable using.  A blow dryer, crayon shavings, and something to turn the crayons into shavings, such as an exact knife or a cheese grater (please use caution when using sharp items).  Once you have decided the colors you would like to use and the effect you would like to express, then you will want to create the shavings.  After you have reached the desired amount of shavings, you will place them on your canvas.  For the featured images, we took a pice of wax paper and folded it in half, placed the shaving between the wax paper, then used a blow dryer to begin heating the crayons up.  Once the desired amount of melting has taken place you will have a lovely piece to use.  As an added component, art is great way to self-soothe and cope with the daily stresses of life!  Next week we will be making candle art so stay tuned in for more fun ways to work with crayons or just come in to Painted Brain and enjoy the camaraderie amongst fellow artists!


Women’s Mental Health

Why we need to address the causes of mental health disparities between men and women.

Painted Brain


There are four mental health issues that affect women at much higher rates than men.  It is estimated that twice as many women will experience depression as men, an estimated 10-15% of women overall.  Factors for this include hormonal fluctuations as well as social, cultural, and environmental factors.  Most women are raised to internalize their feelings rather than express them openly like men, while still bearing the brunt of household, caregiving, and family responsibilities.  Women also earn less on average than men do, and the careful balancing of financial responsibilities combined with household tasks can easily lead to feelings of overwhelm, exhaustion, and guilt.

Women are also twice as likely as men to suffer from anxiety disorders.  Again, the socialization of women in our culture comes into play-with men being modeled to express their emotions externally and women being taught that holding emotions internally is preferable.

Another mental health issue…

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Mask Making for Mental Health


Mental health awareness is comprised of many things, including educating ourselves and the public about what it’s like to live with mental illness.  In an effort to fit in, people with mental illness often wear a mask in order to present as “normal.” The willingness of those who live with mental illness to speak out about it is a powerful way to break the stigma. People living with mental health issues can participate in the unmasking and education of those around them by being vulnerable and willing to show their face; the face of mental illness.

Mask making encourages you to explore the persona you show or conceal from the world. It’s a great exercise which can bring to consciousness how we see ourselves or how we would like to me seen. Individuals can decorate both the inside and outside of the mask according to what they show the world on the outside and how they see themselves on the inside. This does not necessarily need to be done in a therapeutic environment in order to be beneficial.  Speaking with someone who lives with mental illness, helps dispel the misunderstandings that many have about the illness while helping those with mental illness feel less ashamed of their condition. We all have family, friends and coworkers who are living with mental illness. As long as people feel the need to hide their mental illness, the stigma will persist. Often being diagnosed with a mental illness can cause people to feel alone. The more we speak out about mental illness, the more faces we can put to mental illness, the more we can all heal.