Artist Imagines What Mental Illnesses Would Look Like As Monsters (Photos)

You may not be able to see them, but mental illnesses are very real things living inside many of us.

Have you ever wondered what mental disorders might look like if they took on the appearances of living creatures?

Well, thanks to one UK-based artist, we now know.

For his project, titled "Real Monsters," Toby Allen set out to bring a variety of mental illnesses to life by creating a series of monster illustrations personifying these life-altering conditions.

Allen, who suffers from anxiety, first began drawing these whimsical creatures as a way to cope with the struggles of his own condition.

He told Huffington Post,

It made them feel weaker and I was able to look at my own anxiety in a comical way.

After feeling the positive effects his drawings had on his own condition, he decided to create a series of "Real Monsters," hoping his artwork would help others suffering from various mental illnesses.

Allen added,

I hoped to draw attention to mental illnesses that often get ignored or aren't taken seriously. I want to make people aware of how damaging these illnesses are and how much of a burden they can be to those who suffer from them. The project also highlights conditions that some people may have never even heard of, so the work aims to raise awareness for these. I hope that people can relate to the work and that it helps them to see their illness in a different light, make it appear more manageable.

Take a look at the pictures below to see Allen's eye-opening "Real Monsters" series.


Anorexia Nervosa

Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Borderline Personality Disorder

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

Obsessive Complusive Disorder




Selective Mutism

Sleep Disorder


Citations: If Mental Illnesses Were Monsters, This Is What They'd Look Like (Huffington Post)