Melinda Schneider is well-known for her successful music career- but after years of striving for perfection, she turned to art. Ms Schneider said she has been a perfectionist since childhood who had to be good at what she did at obsessive levels, which was a detriment to her mental health. "I have actually had two bouts of depression in 2018 and 19," Ms Schnieder said. "Painting and using abstract expressionism is very freeing for me." IN OTHER NEWS: Ms Schneider began painting in the midst of COVID-19 lockdowns in 2020, when she was unable to tour. "Music artists were out of work, And our income basically stopped overnight. So I had the time to paint," Ms Schneider said. "It was certainly really good therapy for me to focus on, you know, other kinds of creative things. When I couldn't control what was happening in my musical career." Plywood and acrylics have been the tools for Ms Schneider to escape her perfectionism and connect with her true self. "Abstract expressionism is really kind of what you'd call my work. It's really wonderful for me, because it completely I'm a recovering perfectionist," Ms Schneider said. "It's been really good for me, as a therapy to recover from the depression, and to keep myself out of my obsessive thinking and out of my head and onto the canvas or plywood." According to Ms Schneider, creating art has allowed her to unpick the stiches of her perfectionism as she doesn't compare her work or hold it to the high standards she does with her music. "It's a place of freedom for me where I can just be whatever happens happens is no judgment. It's just my expression and it's allowed to be," Ms Schneider said. "I'm allowed to be myself or be whatever I need to be in at any given moment. And there's a lot of freedom in that." "I'm learning a lot more about my true self and other other abilities I've got, other than singing and songwriting." Ms Schneider has been in the music industry for most of her life, starting of as a dancer when she was a child. Ageing in the industry has produced its challenges for Ms Schneider and her perfectionism, as she learns to detach from her high standards. "There is pressure to be a nice girl, a good person, talented, pretty, thin, there's all of those pressures that go along with being a music artist. And for most of my life, I aced all of that stuff," Ms Schneider said. " Now, things are changing, I've become a mum in the last 10 years. Your body changes after that. I kind of had it too good for too long, really." Ms Schneider said she has been subjected to the pressure of looking the same as she did 20-years-ago, even receiving some post-show comments about her changing appearance. "It's hard as an artist, I wrote a poem about it actually, It's a true story of a fan of mine who came up to me after a show at Tamworth," Ms Schneider said. "And he said, you used to be so beautiful. We saw you years ago, now you've got those chicken arms." According to Ms Schneider, as she ages she is learning more about being gentle with herself and letting go of striving for perfection. "Having these ridiculously high expectations that we have for ourselves are most of the time unattainable," Ms Schneider said. "Perfection is unattainable. It doesn't even exist." "The sooner we can be gentle, learn how to be gentle on ourselves, the more we will connect with our true selves."