“When I am in the creative process, either planning a piece of art or in the process of creating a piece of art, it gets me out of myself and I don’t think about my life,” said Army Veteran, Buddy Measles. “I just think about this piece of art that I want to do and the outcome that I want to achieve.” Veterans like Buddy travel from all across the country to compete in the annual National Veterans Creative Arts Competition and Festival, the culmination of talent competitions in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music for Veterans treated in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) national health care system.
VA medical facilities incorporate creative arts into their recreation therapy programs to further the rehabilitation milieu for both inpatients and outpatients. This annual competition recognizes the progress and recovery made through that therapy, and raises the visibility of the creative achievements of our Nation’s Veterans after disease, disability or life crisis. For more information please visit www.creativeartsfestival.va.gov