What is Art Therapy?
Art therapy is a clinical approach in which the client creates art as a way of externally expressing their inner world, with the goal of improving the client's overall sense of well-being.
The media used, the process of creation, and the resulting artwork itself are used to:
explore the client's feelings
resolve emotional conflicts
improve behavioral, mental, and physical functioning
Art therapy is a process of bringing the unconscious to the conscious, within the safe container of the therapeutic relationship.
The most important work of art
is the life that we create.
-ERWIN RAPHAEL McMANUS
HOW DOES IT WORK?
I provide you with a directive, or you may wish to create intuitively and organically.
Then, you make art. You can use almost anything -- paint, pencil, marker, crayon, collage, found objects, clay, and more!
I don't judge or interpret your creation. After all, our time is one of complete and genuine unconditional positive regard for your process to promote optimum freedom of creative exploration.
We approach the art collaboratively, making meaning of the product, what transpired during the process and in post-process reflection.
Do I have to be an artist?
You don't need to be an artist, or to have ever placed crayon/paint brush/marker to paper to benefit from art therapy. There is no "good" or "bad" art in art therapy. There is no artistic aptitude required!
What are some other benefits?
Art therapy can reduce stress and tension, and enhance one's cognitive abilities. It promotes mindfulness and playfulness, and encourages further creative thinking. It also simply makes you feel good to make art!
Who can do art therapy?
I work with high-functioning people of all ages, in individual, couples, family, and group settings.
I've worked with adolescent males in the juvenile justice system; adults with severe mental disorders; children with communication, developmental, and behavioral disorders; adults battling addiction; children and adolescents with life-threatening illnesses; and those surviving trauma resulting from abuse and natural disaster.