Art therapy uses the creative process of making art in order to improve someone’s physical, mental and emotional state.
You don’t have to be a professional artist to express your inner artistic potential as the main purpose of the art therapy is to reduce your stress level, to improve your self-esteem and awareness.
Art therapy may be used by therapists for healing, treatment, rehabilitation and psychotherapy as well.
What do you need for art therapy?
You can use all kinds of materials when expressing yourself through art therapy: paints, chalk, coloring pencils, paints. Just keep in mind that these materials do also need maintenance, so you do need a good pencil sharpener (possibly electric) for your pencils, for instance.
You also need to organize your paints or chalk, and a special desk for them would be great. You need a special corner, all yours, in your home where to store your artistic materials.
And, if you feel you are overwhelmed by everything as you have never colored before (let’s assume so), you can always get the help from a specially trained therapist.
Of course, you can also get help from the professionals, art therapists who are trained in both art and therapy. They know about psychological theories, clinical practice, artistic traditions and human development also.
All kinds of people of all ages may try art therapy as the activities are related to the age of the participants.
Is art therapy your thing?
Art therapy is addressed to all people as anybody has an artistic side. If it has never been exploited before, now it’s your chance to communicate without words what you’re feeling. If you have always relaxed by creating, than it’s even better… you already know what you like and what not.
Don’t hesitate to let your imagination fly and let yourself flow through all kinds of forms of art: painting, drawing, photography, sculpture…Even the fact that you like drawing with blunt pencils says something about you. On a plus, you don’t need extremely efficient pencil sharpeners 🙂
The art therapist is able to help you as he’s especially trained for that. He can advice individuals, couples, families or groups and some art therapists even join their efforts together for better results.
All nonverbal symbols and metaphors, expressed through art and the creative process, are noticed and interpreted by art therapists.
Art therapy may not be a treatment, but it may be used to relieve stress or tension or you can find out yourself, on your own, something new about yourself.
How soon can you start?
Just grab some paper and come colored pencils (don’t forget about the pencil sharpener!) and you’re good to go. Or get some canvas to try painting or …whatever suits you the best. If nothing feels like your thing, give it a go anyway…You might surprise yourself!