Everyday artist of the week
Life after stroke
Pieter Egriega from Cheshire shared a photo of his first painting after having a stroke. We contacted him to find out more about his story.
If you haven’t got any kind of creative outlet for yourself, you haven’t got the drive to achieve after something like a stroke
For work I run a small business, we make apps for schools. But I had always been creative, making music, painting, writing.
In 2013 I had a massive stroke and lost a lot of mobility in my right side. I started writing a book in hospital afterwards, as I had to do something. I am desperate to get back to painting more, but my arm doesn’t do what it used to.
There is a lot of self-reflection that goes on post stroke, and I am looking at myself and trying to find what makes me, ‘me’. Rembrandt painted himself as he got older, and I like that idea, of using your facilities to represent who you are. In a few months I will have more time, and when the canvases come out I think I will probably paint myself more.
I was given a Life After Stroke award for Creative Arts by the Stroke Association. I think it is a really profound thing, that if you haven’t got any kind of creative outlet for yourself, you haven’t got the drive to achieve after something like a stroke.
If you want to do creative things then inevitably you are going to want to recover so that you can still do them. I wanted to communicate in so many different ways before the stroke, and I am determined not to lose any of them.