International Day of Non-Violence

Today is International Day of Non-Violence. So what is it? According to the website of the UN:

The International Day of Non-Violence is marked on 2 October, the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement and pioneer of the philosophy and strategy of non-violence.

According to General Assembly resolutionA/RES/61/271 of 15 June 2007, which established the commemoration, the International Day is an occasion to “disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness”. The resolution reaffirms “the universal relevance of the principle of non-violence” and the desire “to secure a culture of peace, tolerance, understanding and non-violence”.

Because this is ‘Everyday is Special’, I wanted to create something for this day and decided to make a painting. I came up with this:

Painting by Okashi - BE the Change you wish to see in the world

‘Be the change you wish to see in the world’ is a quote by Mahadma Gandhi. I love that quote. The snake is a symbol for change or transformation. As you all know, a snake “changes” their skin at various intervals. He “sheds off” his old self and you see a “new” snake. I have painted the snake in the number 8 because, in tarot cards, the number 8 also represents change or transformation. The background is done with pastel chalk (yes, you can do that on canvas). I started with white in the centre, then yellow, darker yellow, orange, darker orange, red, darker red and red/black around the edges (which you cannot see in the picture). I blended it really well with my fingers until I was happy. I needed several layers but it turned out pretty much the same way I had this in my head. The snake and the quote are painted with aquarel paint. Those also consist of several layers. I think this painting took me about 4 hours to make so that’s not too bad at all. The quote is written in a font I found on the web. It’s not perfect but I had never done it and was stupid enough to directly paint on the canvas instead of writing it with pencil first. I’m really happy about the way it turned out. Yes, there a flaws but it also has its charm. I’n not sure where to hang it yet but I’m definitely going to give it a special place 🙂

In addition to this, I would like also like to tell you something about an amazing project: “Project Unbreakable“. On their website, the say the following about this project:

The mission of Project Unbreakable is to increase awareness of the issues surrounding sexual assault, child abuse, and domestic violence, and encourage the act of healing through art.

Created in October of 2011 by then 19 year old photographer Grace Brown, Project Unbreakable originally featured photos of sexual assault survivors holding posters with quotes from their attackers. In September, Project Unbreakable expanded to include photos from survivors of child abuse and domestic violence. Originally, Project Unbreakable was supposed to stay small – the main intention was to simple create awareness – but soon it was discovered that it provides a way of healing for violence survivors. Since the conception, Project Unbreakable has featured over four thousand photographs, both photos taken by Grace and submissions from all over the world.

Currently, Project Unbreakable travels to colleges and universities around North America to discuss the importance of violence awareness and to showcase the work of Project Unbreakable.

While I was strolling the web (and Pinterest) for inspiration, I stumbled upon this project and I knew I just had to write something about it. People quote what their abuser/attacker said but also what friends, family or even cops, nurses or lawyers said. Take a look at these two:

Project Unbreakable - SURVIVOR       Project Unbreakable - Sexual Abuse Victim and SURVIVOR

I took these photo’s from the Tumblr page of Project Unbreakable (link above when you click ‘Project Unbreakable’) These quotes are so powerful, I just had to share this wonderful project with you.

Are you going to do something special for this day? Care to share in a comment down below?

Don’t forget: tomorrow is World Card-Making Day so check back tomorrow to see what I’ve done for that special Day.

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