Solace through art

Terrance Adams, 41, from Portland, makes master pieces for a living.

A Portland man uses art to deal with difficult situations in his life, from being diagnosed with bipolar disorder, to beating addiction and now to make a living for him and his wife.

Terrance Adams, 41, said: “I had to keep myself busy. It keeps me from harming myself.”

He makes ornaments, spice racks, photo frames, and put together a ship made of matchsticks, chronicling his road to recovery since 2008.

Mr Adams, who has, during his life, spent months at hospitals and rehabilitation facilities, said while in the institutions, he did soul searching, thinking about the existence of God and how to best practise his faith.

“I’ve been ill-treated, beaten and I’ve had to dig deep to know that I am human, I got emotions and that people should treat me with respect,” he said.

Mr Adams said having lived in Mitchell’s Plain, poverty and the battle to make ends meet are commonplace, but that he is using his skill to make a difference in his family’s lives.

He tried to sell his work at the Saturday Mitchell’s Plain Urban Market at the Westridge Gardens, but is disheartened because he has been unable to sell the ship he made of matchsticks about a decade ago.

“It is a really big piece and it is difficult to move because it gets damaged with all of the movement,” he said.

Mr Adams said with his history it is difficult to find a job but he is trying to earn a living.

“I’ve taken a few knocks. My tools have been stolen. I can’t afford to buy material but I make do with what I have,” he said.

“I’m finding it hard to get a job to earn an income. My artwork is the only thing I know .

“I’m trying to make something of myself,” he said, adding that his wife had been of great support to him.

Mr Adams said he has been forced to make more functional pieces of art, like trays, spice racks and trophy shields, which people need and will buy.

To view his work call Mr Adams on 064 427 2457 or 078 608 2269.