Art skills are not necessary or important in art therapy, an art therapist is not an art teacher and It's not about making a piece of art. It’s about using the art making process as a form of expression to gain insights and resolve issues. Creative expression is also good for our mental health as we become relaxed when we focus on making images, relieving stress and anxiety.
Unlike therapies that use words, clients appear more comfortable talking about their images then talking about their own feelings, it might be too difficult or painful to find the words. Clients have an opportunity to express these emotions in the images they create. Here these feelings are given a visual voice. They are an expression of the client’s inner world and the client can feel safe enough to share what they choose to share.
A client may have a feeling or issue they want to express or the therapist may give some direction. The Art Therapist observes how a person may feel while creating the image, the importance of the materials and colors they have chosen and the way they engage with the material. ie paint, clay, crayons, ink.
Individual therapy sessions usually last up to an hour, during that time approximately 30 minutes are spent creating, then time is given to discussing the image. Some grounding and breathing exercise maybe incorporated in the beginning of the session to help client’s focus. Group sessions are similar however they will last longer so everyone has an opportunity to discuss their work if they so choose.
Art Therapy is suitable for all ages, for those who might not have the words or understanding of a situation, to those who have suppressed feelings and memories or just trying to understand why they feel the way the do, or the way they don’t.
You may feel this type of therapy could be helpful to you or for someone you know. To learn more contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +353 85 860 6441.
Social Art Ireland
Art talks, let’s talk about it