Meet Rita Loyd
INSPIRATION TO PAINT HEALING ART came to me in 1996 as a way to create a sense of wholeness in my life after a year of debilitating and chronic stomach problems. I had tried both western medicine and alternative medicine to heal, but without success. I also explored healing on a spiritual level through books but, although helpful, I still felt myself disappearing into depression. So I decided to paint art as a way to lift my spirit.
In order to paint images that lifted my spirit, I had to first examine the areas of my life that needed to be lifted. So I would ask myself questions, such as, "What is bothering me? How does this make me feel? Why does it bother me?” And then I would reflect upon my spiritual studies for advice to see how I could look at life differently, and that advice was what I painted.
During this time, my art and creative process became my teacher, healer, and friend.
- My friend because it was always there for me, willing to listen and eager to help.
- My healer because it helped me to process my painful thoughts and feelings. And it helped me visualize myself strong and at peace. My art became visual affirmations of healing.
- My teacher because it taught me valuable lessons about life. The most important lesson was that it taught me what real self-love was and HOW to truly love myself. This was something that I could never understand before.
When I first began to paint nurturing art, I didn't know that my art was going to be about self-love. In fact, I didn’t know what self-love was. I thought I had known what it was before getting sick but afterwards, when I lost the ability to do the things that I use to be able to do, I stopped loving myself and realized that my self-worth had been conditional.
Then one day in 2005, I had the epiphany. (I wrote the details about this in my book.) After years of painting, I could suddenly see that my creative process was teaching me HOW to love myself and my art was a reflection of that journey. The way the creative process taught me this was that it gave me a setting and a reason to:
- Slow down
- Look inward
- Ask myself questions
- Look for positive answers
- Process my fears and doubts
- Be patient with myself
- Believe in myself
- Trust my intuition
- Value my opinion and sensitivity
- Allow myself to have a voice
With this knowledge, I went on to learn how to incorporate self-love into all areas of my life. I have since gained a greater sense of peace, wholeness and empowerment. I know now that self-love is an ongoing, ever-evolving process and when I remember to realign with unconditional self-love, I am able to shift from a place of negativity and defeat to a place of freedom and empowerment.
I am grateful for what started out as a path to self-healing has grown into a business that allows me to share my tools for nurturing self-love with others. And it is so rewarding to hear from the people who have received inspiration from my work. I also love that my art has appeared on over 100 magazine covers. And I am most proud that my book and therapeutic line drawings are being used by therapists around the country who specialize in eating disorders, domestic violence and rape crisis.
In the meantime, I continue to paint, write, and help my Dad care for my Mom who now has advanced Alzheimer's disease. I also enjoy time with my husband, Jody, and creating joyous moments where ever I can.
I can honestly say that I understand what it is to not love yourself and to search for its meaning.
I hope you find meaning here. I hope you find inspiration to begin, continue or to return to the path of unconditional self-love.