Eye Lamp, handmade by Mary Yamakawa.

Ann had spent her days feeling disconnected from the world, as if she was living on an island and no one else was around. She was too consumed by her loneliness to notice how much beauty there was in life. Until one day, when she stumbled across a handmade object crafted by an artist.
The intricate detailing and thoughtfulness of the item captivated Ann, and for the first time in a long while she felt connected to something bigger than herself. She found herself marveling at the beauty of art and its ability to bring joy to people's lives despite their circumstances. As she continued to explore objects made by various artists, Ann began to heal both emotionally and spiritually as each piece gave her hope that life could be beautiful again.
It wasn't long before Ann transformed her home into an oasis filled with items handcrafted by local artists. Each handcrafted object held meaning-some reminded her of places visited or stories told while others brought peace and solace during difficult moments. With each creation came a mode of self-expression, which helped her connect to herself and others.
Through her love of art, Ann found healing emotionally, spiritually, and creatively. She began volunteering at a local gallery where she got to meet the artists behind each creation. This experience gave her a chance to learn how the process of creating art can promote self-awareness and provide a way to process and express emotions. She discovered that most artists come from different backgrounds but are united by their passion for creating meaningful works of art that can touch people's souls in profound ways.
For Ann, owning objects handcrafted by artists had become more than just having physical possessions - it had become a way for her to heal emotionally, spiritually and creatively. It allowed her to appreciate the beauty in life even amidst hardship and discover new ways for self-expression that resonated deeply within her soul. Art had truly become transformative for Ann - it taught her that no matter what difficulties may come our way, we can always find beauty in life if we are willing enough to look searchingly within ourselves.
Using art as a way of connecting to oneself, and expressing emotions is not something new. Based on research, art can be used for therapy, including as a way to reduce stress and anxiety, improve cognitive function, and increase self-esteem.  Creative expression, specifically through art, can promote healing among us by enhancing self-awareness and providing a way to process and express emotions. Art has the ability to connect people and its beauty transcends life's circumstances, and can even provide a sense of control and empowerment, especially in difficult times. Art has helped individuals work through emotional and psychological struggles and can enable one to provide a sense of connection to others and to the world around them.