art: alfie ljuljdjuraj

thoughts on depression

Today I was at the grocery store.  I was bombarded by stories about the recent death of Robin Williams.  The media tends to exploit the deaths of celebrities making them some sort of spectacle.  Admittedly when it comes to publicized deaths, or deaths of celebrities I find myself taking on the role of a non violant sociopath.  That may sound insensitive but I can not possibly grieve or even care about every death I hear about.

However after hearing of Robin Williams death it saddened me a bit.  When I was younger I must have watched Ms. Doubtfire dozens of times with my family.  His death also got me thinking about how mental illness is treated in  todays society.

It infuriates me how it is still something that is stigmatized.  I know that other scientists regard psychciatry  as a soft science.   Compared to other areas,  There is not as much empirical data. I personally do not find psychoanalysis to yield promising or if any results.  Freud has been largely discredited.  Though I  can say that his ideas when applied to theories of critical thinking can help better understand things like art in different context.   

kinsey had great success in understanding parts of the human condition.  He managed to show how fluid human sexuality could be, and that not all people are merely straight or gay.  Then there were the experiments done by stanely milligram.  He conducted experiments on how to people respond to authority figures. I am guessing however, that those experiments done today would have yielded much different results because people do not respond to authority figures the way they used to.  

There is proof that medication does work for most people suffering from depression.  There are a new school of people that advocate homeopathic remedies.  They demonize doctors that prescribe anti depressants and other such drugs.   I am well aware these kinds of drugs are overly prescribed.   But someone suffering from anxiety and depression is not going to feel better if they take valerian root and ginkgo biloba.  I do not say this ignorantly because I have tried nearly all of them.  Most often i find myself judged by these kinds of people.  Ive people told things like “man i don’t know how you take that stuff its poison”.  Ive been told to “get over it”.  or my personal favorite “a lot of people have it a lot worse you, you’re   lucky”.

Ive suffered from depression so great that I was incapable of rational thought.   My sleep was nearly non existent. My memory was awful.  overwhelming anhedonia was one of the worst.  But of all the symptoms the most unusual to me is that every time i tried to eat anything it would taste rotten,  even though i eat mostly fresh organic foods.  I know because of that state people I thought were my friends stopped talking to me.  I never really talked about my depression though, I know its a subject people do not particularly want to discuss these things.  Also there is not much a person can say to make someone truly depressed feel better.  So for a long time i avoided social interaction all together.  I could tell it was something that people could see on my face.  And I can be read like a book.  Thus causing me to lose even more friendships.

Depression isn’t a weakness and it is certainly not something one can snap out of.  It is a hole that gets deeper the longer you stay there.  It is a disease.  No person wakes up in the morning and says to themselves “oh i think i will be miserable and hate myself for a while”.   Back in my teens when i read elizabeth wurtzel she sounded whiney to me.  But i fully understand now what a physical and emotional pain it really is.  

Anti depressants have helped me a great deal, and I am no longer ashamed of anything.  I also understand that as a whole much of humanity lacks compassion.

*note this is just a personal essay and not based on any researched data 

whenever I’ve been sad my mother has always bought me a black calvin klein dress. my whole closet is black.  i don’t even remember everything i have. and that goes for all the things in my life.  i got a kitchen table.  a nice one thats not from ikea.  maybe that means i am an adult.   my eyes are blurry when i read now.  i thought about how ill always be madame bovary although, for a time i was like ms dalloway in many aspects.  i do not understand why anyone wouldn’t read david foster wallace.  i can not seem to get paint out of my nail beds and my etching this morning is disappointing.  i got an invite to a free sky ferreria show. publicist friends are fantastic sometimes.  i should go to that.  i also got an invite to a factory themed party.  but i have never been too fond of andy warhol and can’t imagine what i would wear.  i sound like an asshole.  (new york problems)

my painting is staring at me


dont mention me
watercolor on paper
new york
alfie ljuljdjuraj

sometimes things are like a thoreau book, i am ok with it all being like walden for now

sorry for the lack of updates.  i can’t post what I’ve been working on for london on the internet until next year.  i will post some sketches and unrelated works soon.



I’ve been busy lately working on paintings that I’m going to be exhibiting in london, that is occupying my entire existence at the moment.  i don’t have more details at the moment but I’m excited to be a part of the balkan artists guild.  i should maybe worry about how much i enjoy my own company.  

ill update with sketches soon!

andthanksforreading asked:
Hello Elle, this is rather crude I realize, I hope you forgive me. I saw you took some gorgeous photographs of yourself and Patrick Cleandenim. Do you have anyway of getting in touch with him as I have been trying to for a few years now. If you need to acquire his permission then please do, and I would be deeply indebted to you. Adam.

hey this is not ellens tumblr I’m her friend alfie ellen took those pictures of me though.  I’m sure if you just google ellen or patrick you’ll be able to find them

you are my allergy 
acrylic on canvas
alfie ljuljdjuraj 2014
Anonymous asked:
ello! love your work i got into art school.... do you have any advice? ;-)

well thank you! and i guess i might not be the best person to ask but ill just tell you what helped me.  the old saying “fake it til you make it”  i made myself be confident when i did something i was proud of, even if i didn’t feel that way.  eventually i did start actually being confident in my work and knowledge, this rubs people the wrong way.  it is much more common to exhibit a kind of fake sincerity.   that i can not stand.  i do not know why it is taboo to be confident in something you dedicate your life to.  its not blind arrogance.  oh i always welcomed criticism for my work  even if it wasn’t positive, sometimes you learn a lot from negative opinions.  take them at face value and apply them to your work if they make sense to you.

other advice i can give you is be better friends with your professors then most of the students there.  do more than what your professor assigns.  always have personal work going on at the same time.  remember that art is hard and if you decide to become a full time artist it makes sense to be working a lot of the time.  also art school isn’t enough.  make sure you work almost everyday if thats the path you feel you want to go.   do not compete with your peers only compete with yourself.   

try to surround yourself with positive, creative like minded people.  you will make some friends at art school, chose the ones that would rather hangout and paint together then the ones who just want to party and be not sober.  

just take everything in and focus 

well i do not know if that will help but i hope it does.

i do not post about other people usually but I’m excited that one of my friends husband did a ted talk! perparim rama is a genius designer check out his talk!

I’m still happy I’m single. 

in a few months i will be affiliated with the balkan artists guild  based out of london.  i am excited to be part of such an interesting group of people.

old mono print