Ootastic: PCOS in pictures

February 26, 2015

30 Film Females: The Skin I Live In (2011 again!)

Filed under: 30 Film Females, acne, CHD — ootastic @ 10:57 am

After drawing a cartoon about my zipper scar, I thought I’d record all of my various scars.  Unlike most posts in this blog series, the idea for the picture came before the film and I decided it suited the Spanish psychological thriller The Skin I Live In.  The disturbingly twisty plot sees Elena Anaya as an unwilling guinea pig in a renegade scientist’s experiment with artificial skin.  The protective face mask she wears is reminiscent of famous fictional artificial intelligences ranging from the 1927 classic Metropolis, spoof spy flick Austin Powers, Pixar animation Wall-E and the recent release Ex Machina.  Incidentally, I love that Wikipedia has a page listing fictional female robots and cyborgs.

I drew a simple representation of the female form (the bodily proportions should imply gender) and added my permanent scars – blue for the older ones from heart surgery and severe chickenpox, red for the more recent ones from teenage acne and my caesarean section.  I still have a few skin blemishes from my bout of hand, foot and mouth disease last year, but these seem to be fading with time.  I occasionally feel self-conscious about my scars, but feel proud of what my body has coped with.  Changing Faces is a charity which supports people who have conditions/injuries or scars/marks which affect their appearance.


February 12, 2015

The Zipper Club

Filed under: CHD — ootastic @ 2:10 pm

A while ago, Comic Nurse asked how I got my scar and the short answer is that I was born with Tetralogy of Fallot.  Thanks to Alder Hey, Addenbrookes and Papworth for taking care of me and to the Somerville Foundation and British Heart Foundation for support.


February 9, 2015

30 Film Females: The Help (2011 again!)

Filed under: 30 Film Females — ootastic @ 12:57 pm

Can a word such as “enjoy” be used to describe watching Civil Rights period drama The Help?  Anyway, I liked the film so much that I immediately ordered the original novel by Kathryn Stockett from my local library (Suffolk Libraries are great in this respect).  It’s difficult to pick favourites amidst an ensemble of wonderful characters, but I’d choose Octavia Spencer’s Oscar-winning, sass-mouthing domestic aid (“Fried chicken just tend to make you feel better about life.”) and (yet again) Allison Janney’s ailing matriarch (“Your eggs are dying. Would it kill you to go on a date?”).

I’ve got another project on the go, so haven’t had a chance to draw an illustration for this blog post.  Instead, I’d like link to this Dementia Friends version of the Beatles song “With a little help from my friends” – not forgetting the much-loved cover by the recently deceased Joe Cocker.  My paternal grandmother spent the last few months of her life in a dementia care home, in which I now see parallels with my toddler’s nursery.  This cradle to grave approach is illustrated in this fascinating art installation (previously seen?) at the British Museum.

Finally, I’d like to say thank you to my friends who help me get by 😉



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