Contained – IF

This painting was created to show how small, one tries to get when despairing, the hair symbolizes blue emotions, the background colors, show the vividness of life still going on in the midst of those feelings; and how small we try to contained our body when feeling these emotions. It is up to the viewer to imagine why and what is happening to cause the containment and despair.

It was created with oil paint, impasto style on wood. It is entitled, “Despair”

Emotions are for me, the hardest to contain and I view myself as a container of feelings.

Laughter bubbles out easily, contagious and freely from children, it’s something adults have learned to try and  contain in some situations.

But, despair, sadness, grief, tears and loneliness is something that we hide and containment of these emotions is imperative, if we do not want to be judged as weak adults.


Why can’t we show the flip-side of happiness? It is what makes us total self actualized spirit-filled beings. It will also keep us healthy. It is..sometimes…what I believe causes so many emotional breakdowns…the containment of feelings.

Find a place today, whether private or public to laugh freely, cry profusely, dance wildly, or sit quietly, but whatever you do, be true to yourself, it’s all good, the textures of life so open that container!


  1. I love the texture in your art. Very tactile. Tanja

    Comment by Tanja Bauerle — January 10, 2009 @ 10:24 pm

  2. Thank you for leaving a comment on my take of contained haha Yours makes me stop and think about what I am to my art…..thanks! Great work hope to see more….so I’m off to look over your blog

    Comment by cartuneman...John — January 10, 2009 @ 10:38 pm

  3. this is very interesting. i like the texture alot.

    Comment by amber perrodin — January 10, 2009 @ 11:14 pm

  4. This is a very powerful piece! I completely understand the contained emotions expressed so very well in your painting. Great job!

    Comment by Edrian Thomidis — January 11, 2009 @ 12:38 am

  5. Very interesting explanations. It´s a good work

    Comment by Tomas — January 11, 2009 @ 5:44 am

  6. interestng that you made the hair blue and what it stands for….i imagined the emotions flowing in that hair….very meaningful!

    Comment by isay — January 11, 2009 @ 5:45 am

  7. That’s the kind of “homework” I’m up to do. I’m almost always smiling and I can’t help it… although, sometimes it feels also good when you are sad, in fact, sadness could be very powerful and inspiring. But, I like happiness more!

    Lovely illo and thoughts.

    Comment by pati @-;-- — January 11, 2009 @ 5:46 am

  8. Really intriguing, powerful image; I like the contrast of the title/subject matter and the life-affirming colours you’ve used!

    Comment by Cathy — January 11, 2009 @ 8:57 am

  9. I so agree with you on this. I actually consider it is very dangerous to contain those emotions too long.
    Love that you chose this image for this word, beautiful!

    Comment by Flying Colors — January 11, 2009 @ 10:32 am

  10. beautiful post Indegene! I remember when I had cancer a friend told me it’s because of all the feelings I kept stuffing inside me. I’ve since learned to let it all out!! There are kind ways of even letting the “bad” stuff out :)
    Lovely painting…full of emotion.

    Comment by studio lolo — January 11, 2009 @ 11:07 am

  11. Thanks for sharing Indigene.
    I do agree with you. Life is about ups and downs.
    I always let my joy and sorrow out.
    It’s a great way to release them out. so freely, I feel more contained.

    Comment by yoon see — January 11, 2009 @ 11:20 am

  12. Reflective – Moving Work (painting and writing). Noteworthy Job!

    Self-acceptance — :)

    Thanks for stopping by — Illustration Friday Topic.

    Comment by christine — January 11, 2009 @ 1:52 pm

  13. Beautiful image. As someone prone to brooding and reactivity, I’m going to differ with you – for some of us, sometimes it’s good not to take one’s feelings as gospel.

    Comment by Susan — January 11, 2009 @ 5:25 pm

  14. That is a beautiful and expressive image. It says so much and is open to the viewer’s own interpretaion. I love your post about it too.

    Comment by Sarah — January 11, 2009 @ 5:49 pm

  15. So deep, lovely symbolism of the image. Great text too. And what you say it is always so true…why is so ashame for adult to cry in public? and try to hide when one feels bad…Contain all the time, adults might all contain since something will break inside!
    Brilliant illustration ( both text and image) for the topic!

    Comment by cati — January 11, 2009 @ 6:25 pm

  16. this is wonderful. I agree with all you say, and the illustration portrays exactly how I feel sometimes. this is amazing

    Comment by messy_fish — January 11, 2009 @ 6:39 pm

  17. so true, indigene. what a beautiful painting.

    Comment by aimee — January 11, 2009 @ 7:16 pm

  18. Thank you for the comment. Your piece, as well, exhibits all the things many people have bottled up and contained within themselves. Your words, promoting expression, are very true. Your portraiture is also admirable. Excellent work!

    Comment by sycla — January 11, 2009 @ 7:36 pm

  19. My, Indigene! So much emotion here. She is trying to contain it, but her despair is evident for all to see. Wonderful large brushstrokes and colors. Lots of thought in this one.

    I often get into those states where I need a good tear-jerker of a movie.

    Comment by Bella Sinclair — January 11, 2009 @ 7:59 pm

  20. OMG the emotion of this piece. It’s just overwhelming!! Such great expression. This is wonderful. It pulls at the heart strings. This is one of your greatest! Bravo!!!

    Comment by vanessa newton — January 11, 2009 @ 8:11 pm

  21. i can feel the emotion…… and can relate with your statement so much…. ooh, thanks for sharing….. love this imagery.

    Comment by merlyna — January 11, 2009 @ 8:17 pm

  22. Thanks so much for your comment on my “contained” entry… I’m glad you liked it!
    I like your take on it too… Oye, have I been there too!

    Comment by KiniArt — January 11, 2009 @ 10:43 pm

  23. what a great piece Indigene! I was always fascinated by those contortionists…(sp) the ones that would place themselves into these small spaces…amazing…

    Have a wonderful week!!!


    Comment by Diana Evans — January 11, 2009 @ 11:42 pm

  24. Very nice painting. I love your take on the IF subject and the way you expressed it.

    Comment by Frank M Hansen — January 12, 2009 @ 12:03 am

  25. powerfully expressive piece for contained. nice work.

    Comment by gai — January 12, 2009 @ 2:41 am

  26. You are right, Indigene, emotions can’t be contained very long, sooner or later they need to get out. As time goes by they do it in a wrong way or leave painful cicatrices.
    Wonderful textures! I specially love her blue hair and voluptuous shape.
    Have a nice week!

    Comment by paola — January 12, 2009 @ 5:29 am

  27. Beautiful piece. Great use of color and texture.
    And thanks for the comment. : )

    Comment by Uptown Girl — January 12, 2009 @ 8:12 am

  28. I’m like a volcano with my emotions. I hold it in and let it brew and then just erupt spewing my emotions…not harmfully, but irrationally. Great painting for this topic. I can feel her despair.

    Comment by Kat — January 12, 2009 @ 9:05 am

  29. wonderful piece and a very thought provoking explanation of it – especially for someone who contains most emotions and was raised to see that as a positive

    Comment by Cobol — January 12, 2009 @ 10:35 pm

  30. LOve these words, and yes, I fully agree. This painting is beautiful as well! I find we live in an all too practical society that discourages the making of art, or creativity, however, it’s these folks who don’t allow themselves to tap into their creativity who are most angry, depressed upset. Still, you have a lot of artists who fall under that sad, depressed category, perhaps because they are in an environment that tries to contain who they truly are, or how they feel. Ok, I’m rambling – sorry.

    Comment by steve — January 13, 2009 @ 11:48 am

  31. a container of feelings! what a profound image and post. You really captured these raw feelings and I love the way you write about life and how you feel. Really special!

    Comment by valgalart — January 13, 2009 @ 1:48 pm

  32. What wise observations you make! Funny how we learn to contain our emotions more and more as we grow older… Your painting truly conveys the feelings of despair. It’s heartbreaking.

    Comment by carla — January 13, 2009 @ 4:06 pm

  33. I truly enjoyed your interpretation, and your whole site…it is powerful [ the painting], beautiful, sensual and sad, all at that same moment of despair…does one comfort her, or cry with her ,or make love to her? Do you feed and shelter her?..give needed medicines or monies? Do you walk around her and continue with your careless life, never to erase her from your mind…

    Comment by ourpapi — January 13, 2009 @ 11:31 pm

  34. nice bright color!

    Comment by enigma — January 14, 2009 @ 9:21 am

  35. Very true all you said,very touching image ,love it

    Comment by theartofpuro — January 14, 2009 @ 1:12 pm

  36. Incredible work…deeply heartfelt…and lovely

    Comment by Roberta Baird — January 15, 2009 @ 1:47 am

  37. Wow, what an incredibly powerful piece.
    I think it may be my favorite one you’ve posted. The texture and the quality of the line as well as the composition work together to really communicate the anguish of despair.

    Comment by Jennifer H — January 15, 2009 @ 7:11 pm

  38. This is very powerful imagery. What a concept for the word ‘container’.

    Comment by kim — January 16, 2009 @ 10:08 am

  39. you are so right about this ! I do a lot of art that I dont show for this reason.

    Comment by AscenderRisesAbove — January 18, 2009 @ 10:42 pm

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