Yes, I’ve found another medium to express my pain and you can own your own copy of it!

I didn’t see the point of creating a long description of my living with pain, sharing my tips, turning journal entries into a pain story. Afterall, first and foremost, before the person in pain, I am an artist… so my book had to contain many pictures and few words, just 32 pages in fact, but I believe it’s a complete story. It doesn’t hold the solution for PN but it’ll allow you to explain it to someone else, leave it on the coffee table, and it will be light enough to carry around.

Above all I created it to express my experience so far and so that it is a bit of a companion to another PN family member. The idea was for the reader to feel empathy in a world where no one seems to understand, and to ease the pain as you look through it.

My marionette, Ms Soula, has been a great aid in helping me communicate my frustration with this invisible pain. Most of you would have read that a portrait I painted of her recently became a semi finalist piece for The National Doug Moran Portrait Painting prize. I’m happy that Ms Soula, is communicating my message. In the midst of being creative with Ms Soula (refer to full post) I have found more ways to express my pain, they have formed this book.

Art & Chronic Pain – A Self Portrait by Soula Mantalvanos

I use drawings, sentences and phrases from my website, guided by your comments and emails to me, and used Ms Soula’s strings to document my pain journey’s ups, downs… and knots. I wanted this to be very special and with Theo’s help, it is. There is a dust jacket with real strings attached, one by one (thanks Theo).

There will only be 500 copies produced. I’ve inserted some preview images in this post but don’t want to give too much away.

I won’t be releasing the book in an online format, the subject is too personal so I feel the screen does not suffice. Each page must be handled and touched while it’s being read.

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Art & Chronic Pain – A Self Portrait by Soula Mantalvanos

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The price of my book is $29 (plus postage*) and it’s also available at Queenscliff Gallery & Workshop. Order online by selecting an option below and hitting the ‘buy now’ button (credit card orders can be processed through PayPal even for those who don’t have an account).

Cost: $29 (view postage costs in the dropdown)

Outside dust jacket.
Pictured below: two double-page spread examples.
Size closed: 195mm (W) x 255mm (H)
Pages: 32 plus dust jacket with attached strings
*Postage costs pay for waterproof and protective package.
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Art & Chronic Pain – A Self Portrait by Soula Mantalvanos