After a particularly hard day last week, 18-year-old Amelia Hall had the urge to hurt herself — but the teen painted famous Van Gogh artwork on her leg instead of self-harming. Hall has struggled with with depression and self-harm for several years, and she chose to channel her pain and use it to create something beautiful — a recreation of Van Gogh’s painting Café Terrace at Night.
After posting the image to Twitter (though her account now appears to be deleted), Hall received a positive response.
In just two days, the post had gotten over 3,000 likes and strangers have sent messages of encouragement and support.
Hall says that, over time, she’s learned that “no matter how bad everything may be, it’s not worth physically hurting yourself.”
The University of Manchester student spent over three hours on the painting — and she says that, at one point, she considered washing it off and going to bed.
Although the painting didn’t make her depression go away, she says it’s wonderful to know that she used her negative emotions for creativity rather than self-harm. And, she certainly never expected that so many people would feel inspired by her post.
Hall’s creativity and honesty are inspiring — and her post is a lovely reminder that we can take our most painful emotions and use them to make something beautiful.