The percussionist was not part of the group's recent reunion, which has included a number one album in the U.S. with 13 and a successful world tour, and his absence has been blamed on disagreements over contracts.
Ward recently turned his attention to creating a new art collection called Absence Of Corners, which he painted by using drum sticks as brushes, and he now admits his creative work helped him express his emotions following the fallout with the heavy metal group.
He tells Dcheavymetal.com, "There were some things that were primarily related to the turbulent emotional stuff that I was going through after the contractual agreement couldn't be sorted out... I just felt so horrible about everything about that not being able to be sorted out as I believe they (my bandmates) did... That turbulence and that emotional upheaval, I think some part of it may have reflected through my (art)."
Ward singles out one piece in particular which appears to convey his emotional state at the time: "It's called Grief... It's so sad... And that's exactly how I felt about it... Even as we speak I'm still recovering from all of this you know. And Grief would have been my number one choice in attaching something to the emotional well being, or the unemotional well being, of that period - 2012, 2013, very, very, very tough years... It's really quite morbid looking... It's just this tormented soul... It scares me to be honest with you. It really scares me. It really bothered me, bothered me a lot."
However, the drummer is adamant painting has helped him deal with his negative emotions, adding, "It brought a semblance of relief because... I'm in a lot of pain, man... Absence Of Corners became more of a therapy session for me. A long therapy session which is still continuing."