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People with ‘invisible’ diseases (e.g. Infertility, Endometriosis, Cystic Fibrosis, Chronic Kidney Disease, ME, depression) may find it especially difficult to explain their experiences to others. DrawingOut Invisible Diseases uses step-by-step metaphor-based drawing exercises to help people express and share their thoughts and feelings about their condition.

The DrawingOut method is the result of collaboration between Dr Sofia Gameiro and Dr Lisa El Refaie and was first used in two workshops:

  1. With Black and Minority Ethnic women suffering from infertility in Cardiff (together with Berit Bliesmann, University of Aberystwyth University, funded by Welsh Crucible). Drawing helped the participants to overcome language and cultural barriers, and to facilitate the expression of sometimes very emotional, taboo views.
  2. With endometriosis patients in Wales, as part of a consultation exercise for the Welsh government to discover how sufferers experienced their symptoms and the treatment provided by the NHS.

To make the DrawingOut method available for everyone to use, the DrawingOut Invisible Diseases website offers detailed guidance for anyone who would like to use it individually or run their own drawing workshops. In the website galleries, you can find some of the artwork produced by patients, as well as links to information and support.