What is art therapy?
First things first...YOU DO NOT NEED TO BE GOOD AT ART TO PARTICIPATE IN ART THERAPY!!!
Art therapy is often a confused term that gets lumped in with recreational therapy or coloring books. It is so different from both of those things. It is not a technique, method, or approach. It is an independent field requiring a specific independent master's degree and additional supervised post-master's clinical training. The work of an art therapist is to gain access to complex psychological issues and help individuals heal from psychological wounds through the artistic process in a manner that is comparable to other related mental health fields such as social work, professional counseling, or marriage and family therapy.
In art therapy with me you will have the opportunity to use a variety of art media such as paint, clay, chalk/oil pastels, collage, found materials, and more. Through art making we will begin to illustrate your narrative in a way that is contained and safe.
Art and dreams alike are a product of your psyche. That means that without filter art allows us to gain access to your truest pains, needs, urges, and desires. Sometimes words alone just aren't enough to access these parts of your being. Fun fact: Did you know the word "psyche" actually means soul? So when doing psychological work, you are doing work for your soul. If art and dreams allow us access to this most important part of you, why would we want to do therapy any other way?
When joining me in art therapy you will have full autonomy to choose what materials you feel like using. At times I may suggest one material or another as it pertains to your present feeling state or seeming emotional needs. Some materials are better at times than others. For instance clay may be a really great medium when you are feeling stressed as you may be able to transfer tension onto the clay as it is more physically engaging than some other materials. If you are feeling 'all over the place' I may suggest using some more controlled or dryer materials like colored pencils as to not add to your current chaos and overwhelm.
Important Art Therapy Sites or Resources:
American Art Therapy Association: www.arttherapy.org
Art Therapy Credentials Board: www.atcb.org
The Delaware Valley Art Therapy Association: www.dvata.org
The Pennsylvania Art Therapy Licensure Council: www.paatlc.org