Mindful drawing with Make Daisy Chains. Color in this mindful drawing and read the interview with the mental health advocate and queer feminist artist behind the @makedaisychains Instagram.
Interview by Ainsley Perek
What is Make Daisy Chains?
I’m Hannah Daisy, @MakeDaisychains is my instagram and twitter account name. What I do is make nail art, zines, patches and badges. A lot of my work is inspired by mental health, self care, cats and feminism.
How did you get into making them?
I started with making patches. The first patch I made was a picture of my cat with the words ‘hairy feminist’ on top. uploaded a picture of him to tumblr and it went viral. I got thirty two thousand reblogs. The picture started popping everywhere so I made it into a patch and a mini zine aswell.
What’s been a personal favourite design you have made.
I made a patch that said ‘fuck anxiety’ which is probably my favourite.
How do your own experiences of mental health issues influence your art?
I would say three things: where i work, I have a lot of friends who have current and past mental issue and there is also myself. I’ve had mental health issues and I just wanted to do something positive.
How would you like to see Mental health issues treated in the future?
I could talk about that for ages. I think we need to have more open conversations and make them a normal thing. If you have the flu you can say ‘i’m having the flu’, I think you should be able to say ‘i’m having really bad days with my anxiety’ or whatever your going through. I’m lucky to have really amazing friends and we can say things like that but with work, I can’t imagine a lot of people being able to call up and say ‘I’ve got really bad anxiety today’. With services at the moment there are a huge number of cuts. It was in the news that 1 in 4 people have mental health problem at some point in their life and 75% of people don’t get help and thats shocking. Working where I work I’ve seen cuts, wards close and teams merges and at the end of the day people cant access treatment.
What advice would you give to people suffering from mental illness?
Get help as soon as possible, find things that you enjoy doing and do them as much as possible, look after yourself, if you think you need a day in bed, maybe you do need a day in bed, have a balanced diet and sleep. Also, people do deserve help, so If you go to your GP and they just try to give you antibiotics say I want help. Be persistent with GPs because some don’t have the knowledge or awareness and talk to people. Talk to your friends or family. Read zines, there are so many good ones out there about mental health so you can read other peoples stories.
It says in your Instagram bio that you identify as queer. How does this influence the designs you make?
I’m not thinking in a binary way. My nail art isn’t just for women, it can be worn by people who are non binary, or trans, or men. I’ve just been making Buffy the Vampire Slayer decals and I deliberately made one with Willow on it because I know she is someone that a lot of queer people identify with and I put Scully form the X-files in for the same reason.
What’s next for you?
I want to make some zines about Polycystic ovaries syndrome and endometriosis but thats further down the line. I’ve found a lot people in the queer community with POS who struggle with getting help because the help is directed toward fertility, weight loss and hair removal. Some people who don’t identify as a woman may not want be concerned with those things, and what they want help with is their hormones.
How do you take time out to rest your mind, body and soul?
I like drawing, baking and making art. I also love spending time with my cat Edward and little things like having a shower is really nice.
What would you say was your superpower and why?
I can turn my hand to most crafts except for sowing.
If you could help the world in one way, what would you do?
I guess it would be to make mental health issue seen in the same way as physical health issues and there would be no stigma to having them. one of the decals I made said ‘sad not lazy’, I think a lot people with mental health problems label themselves as lazy because that’s the way other people see them, but in fact there not lazy they’re sad.