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Artists Against Hate Crimes
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Jared Leto - Echelon by Cataclysm-X Jared Leto - Echelon :iconcataclysm-x:Cataclysm-X 5,696 1,346 The darkroom by caioscardoso
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The darkroom :iconcaioscardoso:caioscardoso 14 8
Hope Above by Maylar Hope Above :iconmaylar:Maylar 41 6 Boys at park by nicojeda Boys at park :iconnicojeda:nicojeda 2 3 anti bullying by bazzhunter anti bullying :iconbazzhunter:bazzhunter 13 16 Dapper Gentleman by Hullabaloo2 Dapper Gentleman :iconhullabaloo2:Hullabaloo2 54 16 Habibi by Hullabaloo2 Habibi :iconhullabaloo2:Hullabaloo2 400 124 Below by claytonwoolery Below :iconclaytonwoolery:claytonwoolery 5 6 goldeneye by ceruleanvii goldeneye :iconceruleanvii:ceruleanvii 204 22 Wonderland in the Cup by Maylar Wonderland in the Cup :iconmaylar:Maylar 204 42 Angel by Yukov Angel :iconyukov:Yukov 9 6 +There is hope+ by moroka323 +There is hope+ :iconmoroka323:moroka323 281 72 Parus major by Alexandru-MM Parus major :iconalexandru-mm:Alexandru-MM 15 9 Monster of steel by jimmyvilas Monster of steel :iconjimmyvilas:jimmyvilas 166 37



If you are looking for Happiness and Fulfillment from anywhere other than from within yourself, you are looking in the wrong place. A person can live in abject poverty and abysmal conditions, and feel generally happy and fulfilled.  A person can live in opulent luxury and in the best of conditions, but feel miserable and unfulfilled.

The truth is that we can CHOOSE to be happy, no matter how bad our circumstances, but I know first-hand how hard that can be in the face of pain, fear and depression. But there are also things which can help nurture happiness, fulfillment and containment, despite negative factors in your life.

I have continuous crippling physical pain, along with nerve degeneration, loss of body function and isolation.  I also face the knowledge that it will get worse and worse until it kills me.  Yet, I usually feel relatively happy, fulfilled, content and I very much appreciate what I do have.  Sometimes I lament and grieve the loss of my social life and my active life, my inability to go out and meet freinds, to dance, to hike and rock climb.  If I let it happen, depression, anxiety, and sometimes despair can easily take over.  I work daily to control those negative emotions. I work to live only in the present and loose myself in helping others, books, dreams, and DA. Sometimes reality can hit like a Tsunami—such is life—I am far from perfect. Then I work to brush it off and get back to living.

As my body degraded over the last few decades, I kept losing the ability to do the things I loved to do, things that helped to define who I am.  But when one door closes, another opens. The trick is in recognizing the next door to open, and to have the courage to open it, and to have the courage to keep REINVENTING YOURSELF.

I look for and appreciate many things that most of you take for granted, like finding diamonds in the muck. I look for the small thing, like the sun falling across my dace, the sounds of kids laughing, my partner smiling, a great song, something beautiful…

Suffering is good for you.  How would you recognize or appreciate warmth or coolness if you have never experienced extreme cold or heat?  Every life is a series up ups and downs.  The deeper you fall into the pit, the further you can later rise up and soar high above like a bird, if you let it happen.  A shattered heart, love lost, allows you to feel and appreciate the next love even more love, assuming you do not withdraw like a tortoise in its shell or build walls around you.  If you are in a deep pit or slump, have faith that it will indeed get better, but remember you can help things along.

In my world travels, I have seen abject poverty and terrible human suffering.  Yet the thing that truly changed my life was in seeing how happy most of these people were, despite hunger and living in terrible conditions.  They found happiness with each other and made the very most of what they had.  It almost seemed like the more you have the less happy you will be, but that is oversimplified. STUFF and busy lives filled with thousands of distractions can act as a barrier to the things that naturally bring happiness.

Many people tie up their lives in pursuit of YOUTH, BEAUTY, WEALTH, POWER, FAME, RECOGNITION, CAREER, and SEX.  Sometimes we loose contact with what is really important in life, and get sidetracked by the wrong things and by the massive amount of distracting details, data and demands on our time that we are constantly surrounded by and inundated with, especially when constantly plugged into electronics. We can end up with less and less quality time spent with friends and loved ones, especially doing enjoyable things together.  By prioritizing our lives and our time, we can improve the quality and happiness of our lives.  It is like constantly wasting small amounts of money per day, and not having any money left for the things you really want.

As my body and mind have degenerated, I have had to keep prioritizing things out of my life.  There is no room for the thousands of things that distract people from truly living.  In this process, I discovered the most important things that will bring some measure of love, happiness, fulfillment, contentment and perhaps a bit of serenity into our lives:

    :bulletgreen: First is to nurture your connections with people, particularly with the people you care about the most, and to seek new freinds.

    :bulletblue: Second is to manifest some sort of creativity into your life.

    :bulletblack: Third is to feel as if you are part of something, or feeling a sense of purpose or belonging.

    :bulletyellow: Fourth is to give-of-yourself to the benefit of those in need, with no expectation of return (like volunteer work).

    :bulletorange: Fifth is to engage in activities with other people and in your community. Cooperation and Community are in our DNA.  It does not matter if it is a simple game of frisbee, playing games with others, helping a neighbor on a project, community clean-up, or other endless possibilities, it will help you feel better.

    :bulletpink: Sixth is to treat yourself and others with COMPASSION, UNDERSTANDING, RESPECT, HONESTY, FAIRNESS, TOLERANCE, and TRUSTWORTHINESS.

    Seventh is FORGIVENESS, to LET GO OF HATE, Prolonged Anger, Vengeance, and Retribution from your life.  This includes Forgiving YOURSELF. Hate is like YOU drinking POISON, then waiting for the other person to die.  Hate consumes you from the inside out and it limits your capacity to love.

    :bulletpurple: Eighth is to take nothing for granted, feel gratitude for that which you have in your life, and try to get the most enjoyment out of life that you can, while you are most able to do so.

    Ninth is to try to focus and live more in the present, enjoying this moment, and worry less about the unknowns of the future. DO NOT DWELL on negative things. We can be responsible and plan for future needs and future possible problems, but don't dwell on such things.  Satisfaction lies in the journey, not in the destination. There is no destination in life, just changing goals and dreams.

    :bulletblue: Tenth is to seek BALANCE in all parts of your life.  We need water to survive, but you can drown in a puddle of water. A drink or two of alcohol can add pleasure and be a social lubricant, but too much can destroy your life or kill you. This applies to every aspect of life, from sex, work, hobbies, social life, etc. Every relationship needs some codependency, but too much will destroy the relationship. Seek Balance in all aspects of your life.

    :bulletyellow: NOTE: Physical Activity and/or Exercise is another way to produce happy making endorphins, as well as helping us stay healthy and improving blood flow and oxygen to the brain. Physical Activities with other people also ties into Keys 1 and 5 for added benefit.

Remember that your most fundamental personal power in life is your POWER OF CHOICE.  You can CHOOSE to be happier, to take the steps to make yourself happier.


:bulletgreen: Notice and focus on what YOU HAVE, more than what you do not have.

:bulletblue: Notice and focus on what is POSITIVE in your life, more than on the NEGATIVES.

:bulletyellow: Notice and focus on what you Love about YOUR LIFE, more than what you hate about your life.

:bulletorange: Notice and focus on what you Love about YOURSELF, more than what you hate about yourself.

:bulletpink: Notice and focus on what you Love about PEOPLE, more than what you hate about people.

For more detailed help to find Happiness, especially if your are Depressed, please see:

This was written to help ANYONE find a Happier and more Fulfilling life.   I wrote it especially for those of you who feel Depressed or Stuck in Life.
It is my hope that all of you can find a measure of happiness, contentment, and fulfillment in your lives, no matter what the circumstances of your lives are.  It is my hope that you will be able to look in the mirror and see the true beauty of who you are, and love yourself.
I know this seems like a lot to read, but isn't happiness worth the effort?  I believe that these steps can truly help you in a major way, as long as you actively choose to improve your life, and commit yourself to the process.  Some people have plenty of Dopamine and Endorphins to keep them feeling good, motivated and riding high, but even these people can find there lives feeling empty and unfulfilled, and all of us will experience depression at some point in our lives.


Truly, the greatest gift you can ever give to yourself, is to give to others, of yourself, for the benefit of others, and without expectation of return. I highly recommend it. It can also return our humanity to us, if it is lost, and it can pull us out of ourselves and back in the world, when we are lost in despair inside up ourselves.

It takes courage to live, courage to love, courage to think for ourselves, courage to be happy and experience joy, courage to seek beauty and truth, courage to be a person of integrity and good character, courage to create, courage to overcome adversity and our many fears, courage to open our eyes and ears, courage to reach out and help other, or being willing to accepted it when you need it…The alternative is to not do those things and be like most people.

You can CHOOSE to look for beauty in the world around you, and come to recognize it in the most of amazing places. I can find great beauty in a muddy puddle of water, or in the old wrinkled naked body of a 90 year old person.  I can look at a war ravaged landscape and see the beauty of single human spirit struggling  to love and hope in a desert wasteland of humanity.  The more difficult it is to find beauty, the harder you have to look, but it is there.

You can also CHOOSE to see the physical world around in terms of light, shadow, and billion of colors. You can choose to open your eyes and actually SEE the world around you, look at the world going by, instead of looking at your walking feet, or staring blankly ahead.  Stop and focus on things and people to truly experience life and be a part of it. Use all of your senses.

Most of all, look in your mirror and see the great beauty in the person staring back at you, and be filled with the wonder of it all.

You do not know what life holds for you tomorrow. Instead of agonizing over tomorrow, get the most out of today. The future can be feared, or it can be seen as an exciting adventure.

By Matthew Barry    :iconinspiredcreativity: inspiredcreativity

© Matthew Barry 1988, 1992, 2004, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 All Rights Reserved.

O T H E R   H E A L I N G   D E V I A T I O N S:

This was written to help ANYONE find a Happier and more Fulfilling life.   I wrote it especially for those of you who feel Depressed or Stuck in Life.
It is my hope that all of you can find a measure of happiness, contentment, and fulfillment in your lives, no matter what the circumstances of your lives are.  It is my hope that you will be able to look in the mirror and see the true beauty of who you are, and love yourself.
I know this seems like a lot to read, but isn't happiness worth the effort?  I believe that these steps can truly help you in a major way, as long as you actively choose to improve your life, and commit yourself to the process.  Some people have plenty of Dopamine and Endorphins to keep them feeling good, motivated and riding high, but even these people can find there lives feeling empty and unfulfilled, and all of us will experience depression at some point in our lives.
Where we find ourselves on the Tree Of Life is determined by CHOICE and by LIFE itself.  We can stay where we are, or we can climb the Tree of Life through Taking Risk, Learning and Growing, thereby gaining Wisdom and finding our bit of enlightenment.  WE ARE OUR CHOICES.
The source of your Human Dignity is your Power of CHOICE. Empower yourself through Choice. Life itself determines where and when you get choice. You have no say about the earthquake that just hit, but you do have a lot of choice in how you react to it, and what you do. You walk a path through life, where you can only move forward and never backward, and you cannot see very far ahead.  Life will create forks in your road, as well as obstacles, events and challenges, but at each fork in the road, each obstacle, each event and challenge, you have CHOICES.  Sometimes, the only available choices may totally suck, but you still have choices.  Most people are lazy are
How I Live My Life
Happiness & Sadness, Love & Hate, Good & Bad, Beauty & Ugliness, Intimacy & Loneliness—ALL Of These Things Are Relative To Each Other.
How can you know happiness without knowing sadness? If you live your life on top of a large plateau, you will never know you are living high-up, until you have found the edge and look down? How do you know you are warm, if you have never experienced being hotter and colder? They are all relative to each other, as are love and hate, good and bad, beauty and ugliness.
How can we appreciate one unless we have experienced the other? The greater our experience of sadness, the more we will appreciate our happiness.
Love lost, heart torn asunder, the emptiness, grief, and loneliness felt, ALL of these will make us appreciate new found love, even more.
When feeling despair try as hard as you can to realize that this will pass and that this will later be a benefit to you.  After feeling despair, do not try to forget it.  Instead,
How I Live My Life
This is a powerful tool for Imagineering yourself to:
    :bulletgreen: To be the kind of person you want to be
    :bulletblue: Achieve a Specific Goal and Improve Skills (even Sports)
    :bulletblack: LET GO of Negative things like STRESS, Depression, Sadness, Anger, Hate & Frustration;
    :bulletwhite: Reenergize and Revitalize Yourself, Renew Hope
    :bulletyellow: Improve Self-Confidence, Self-Worth, Self-Image
    :bulletorange: Fantasize Romance, Love, Intimacy and even Sexual Intimacy
    :bulletpink: HEAL Grief, Illness, Injury and to Forgive People or Yourself
    :bulletred: Helping you Make Freinds and Ask For Dates
    :bulletpurple: Manage PAIN an
Pain and Life Circles by inspiredcreativity Pain and Life Circles


Artist | Professional | Digital Art
United States

I am a 60 year old Gay man, way-old, and I have been married to my husband Greg for over 25 years and counting, and now married under Washington State law. My degree is in Engineering, from a Merchant Marine Academy (not military), and I went to sea to sail as an Engineer on Supertankers, and worked up to Chief Engineer. I retired on my own investments when I was 34 years old, and went into Full-time volunteer work in a Soup Kitchen and doing in-home care helping those dying of AIDS. I had also started doing volunteer Peer Counseling to the Gay Community (trained at the University of Washington). I also started doing secondary and primary care of those dying of AIDS. After 8 years, I was no longer able to do physical labor in the Soup Kitchen, so I decided to focus much more on counseling. When I became disabled, I could no longer help those with AIDS, so I started doing all of my counseling using the internet.

In art, I started with pencil, charcoal and ink drawing, as well as watercolor. Then I primarily did metal art for about 17 years, since I was also a machinist, welder and metal fabricator, as well as certified electrician and plumber, etc. A year after retiring at age 34, I purchased my first Apple computer and Photoshop 1. Digital Photography barely existed in 1990. I had some experience working with film in a darkroom, which helped me learn Digital Photo Editing, and then Digital Art. When I felt more confident in my skills, I started a Digital Graphic Design Company, using Adobe Photoshop, PageMaker (later InDesign), Acrobat, Illustrator, and Painter.

It is believed that I started developing arthritis at around age 12. It was not much a life-limiter until my early 30's, and became crippling in my late 40's. The disease is progressive and will do me in, since the progressive nerve damage is now effecting my internal organs. I am now unable to do much of anything, including my art. Pain medications have had severely affected my cognitive and memory functions. The disease has progressed to the point where I am effectively homebound and rather non-functional, other than my online volunteer counseling. I am no longer able to dance or do much of anything physical, including much walking.

I was also born with Autism Spectrum Disorders, with High Function Autism and Sensory Integration Disfunction being dominant. I failed 1st grade and was going to be put in a school for the Mentally Retarded (what they called it back in 1960). Thankfully my parents borrowed money to have me tested, which was when the Sensory Integration Disfunction was found. After a lot of physical therapy and one year of private school, I was able to skip 3rd grade. I was in speech therapy up through the 6th grade.

I also faced physical abuse at home until I was about 15 years old, and bulling and isolation at school. Fear, loneliness and self-hatred defined much of my childhood. Autism itself acts to socially isolate you. I always felt like I was on the outside looking in, never fitting in anywhere or with anyone. When I was 11 years old, I was discretely following cute boys around, and at 12 years old, I fell in love with a boy and came to realize that I felt about boys the way I was supposed to feel about girls. When I was 13, I tried to come-out to my aunt, but she just brushed it off as a phase. Soon after that my Priest told us Altar Boys that when a boy is attracted to another boy, he is an Abomination in the eyes of God and doomed to burn for an eternity in the everlasting fires of Gahanna. I had wanted to be a Missionary Priest. Soon after that my Faith shattered and I tried to jump off a Freeway overpass, just to have some man grab my feet.

Despite knowing that I felt about boys the way I was supposed to feel about girls, I had no clue what sex was or even what swear-words meant, or what Faggot or Queer meant, until I was 19 years old, so you can see how isolated, innocent and naive I was. I was actually stalked by girls through both Jr. High and High School, which made my life more miserable. However, because of that no one thought I was Gay. I was bullied and isolated because of my Autism.

When I entered the Academy, everything changed. They guys fully accepted me, included me in everything, and even liked me, which was a completely new experience for me. The Academy basically became my new family and I experienced rapid personal growth, and I thrived. Back then, in the Merchant Marine, Gay men would literally be killed if discovered, tossed over the side of the ship. I had to watch myself carefully. One time on a ship, I got caught sitting down and crossing one knee over the other, then got razzed for a week for, “Sitting like a Queer.” Even mail was not private, so my partner then, Paul, became Paula, and I had to constantly change ‘him’ to ‘her’ and ‘he’ to ‘she’ when talking about home.

On my last ship, retiring from sailing, I sent out over 50 letters to my best mates at sea, coming-out to them that I was Gay. I then came home to find an empty house, empty bank accounts, and no partner. It shattered me. Then letters started coming back from my best mates at sea, and about half of them totally rejected me with outright hatred, including two death-threats, and comments like, “I hope you die a horrible lingering death from AIDS,” “Burn in hell Faggot,” “You don’t deserve to live,” “Fu**ing Queer,” etc. About another quarter of the letters were not answered and about a quarter were supportive. The end result all of these things was that I almost succeeded in killing myself. I only survived due to severe allergic reaction to a sedative I took to relax myself into the dying process. This is when I finally got some counseling.

I needed to learn how to overcome the worse of my Autism challenges, to meet people, make friends, and socialize. I found a Gay & Lesbian Dance place where everyone seemed to be having a blast, so I started learning how to dance, eventually learning to both lead and follow Two-step, West Coast Swing, Tango, Fox-trot, Rhumba, Waltz, Samba, Mambo, Bolero, etc, as well as going enjoying a club dance floor. With my kind of Autism, dancing should have been ‘impossible’ to learn, but I just kept going 5 to 6 nights a week, taking lessons, and forcing myself to introduce myself to one stranger each night and socialize (harder than you could ever imagine). I pushed myself so hard to learn how to dance and to socialize with people that my brain literally remapped itself, forming new neural pathways around problem areas. This process is called Neuroplasticity. It brought real joy and happiness into my life, as well as a lot of love.

I loved dancing, rock climbing, hiking, whitewater rafting, landscaping and building things. But one-by-one, I could no longer do the things I loved. I kept dancing until I was coming home and vomiting from the pain. As I keep losing the ability to do things I love, I have to keep reinventing myself and learning new ways to fulfill my life. My hard life has given me a true appreciation for the many small or simple things everyone else takes for granted. This allows me to find happiness in each day, despite the constant pain, as well as physical and mental limitations and knowing I will not exactly have a long life. My partner Greg helps care for me, and I feel certain that he will stay with me until the end. What more can a guy ask for?

Alas, little of my work is posted. There was no internet to speak of when I did most of my digital art, and then no way to post art. Almost all of the sold and commissioned work was done under older contracts that did not allow posting a likeness of the work on the internet, which means it requires written permission to post, and that is too big of a project for me. I posted mostly things that marked important personal moments or have emotional meaning for me.

I am astounded by the breadth and depth of the creative and artistic work form the artists here on deviantART. I am amazed at how creative and imaginative young artists are. DeviantArt is like a candy store with a huge variety of candy. I am very thankful for all of the artists here who have shared their work with us. While I do get attacked by Christian Fundamentalists on DA, I have never before found a community like this where almost everyone is so cordial with each other, respectful of each other, encouraging, and willing to help each other. A big ‘Thank You’ to all of the artists here.

Live life to the fullest every day of your life. Take nothing for granted.




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CaldoRosa Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist

Time really is weird
inspiredcreativity Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
The older you get, the faster time seems to move.  It is a matter of relativity.  If you are 10 years old, 1 year represents one-tenth of your life and waiting a month can seem like a very long time.  If you are 100 years old, 1 year represents only one-hundredth of your life and waiting for one month seems to go by goes by in a flash.  I have heard a lot of young in my life complain of boredom, yet it is not a concept I am familiar with.  Even sitting in a doctors office waiting to be seen is an opportunity to create something in your mind.
CaldoRosa Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist

Didn't know you are 63 now.

inspiredcreativity Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
thank you for the Birthday Greetings.  63 seems very old.  I don't feel that old, LOL.
CaldoRosa Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday.
inspiredcreativity Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
Hi David,

I replied with permission for use in your charity project, via your website contact page.
davbarrett Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2018
Hi Mathew,
I am looking at doing a world peace project where I would like to use your world map projection artwork as part of a print for t-shirts to raise money.  Could you please contact me via my website kerlunkdotcom to discuss my project.  Thanks, David.
davbarrett Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2018
Hi Matthew,
I am looking at doing a world peace project where I would like to use your world map projection artwork as part of a print for t-shirts to raise money.  Could you please contact me via my website to discuss my project.  Thanks, David.
ConstantlyDrooling Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2017   Photographer
It does, thank you.
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