The American Art Therapy Association defines art therapy as an integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families, and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psychotherapeutic relationship. Art Therapy is facilitated by a professional art therapist. It effectively supports personal and relational treatment goals as well as community concerns.
Art Therapy is used to improve cognitive and sensory-motor functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate emotional resilience, promote insight, enhance social skills, reduce and resolve conflicts and distress, and advance societal and ecological change. (American Art Therapy Association, 2018)
Art Therapy at The Restoration Space
What do you think of when you hear the words art therapy? For many, the image of a child finger painting or an artist is at the forefront of their thoughts. While children and artists can benefit from the use of art therapy, it can have real value for everyone!
In today’s world we are made to think that if we do not have true talent in any area of life, we should not participate in those activities. This holds true especially in the arts. When we resign ourselves to this thought process and shut down creativity, we tend to focus more on words and logic. If we completely shut down the creative portion of our brain, we can miss out on much of the joy and self-expression in life.
Adults and children can use art therapy to meet many different therapeutic goals in their lives such as; addressing trauma, creating effective coping strategies for stress and anxiety, a form of meditation and relaxation, and expressing various emotions.
Group Art Therapy
Within group art therapy sessions specific themes will be explored and discussed.
An art directive will be presented and discussion will follow the art-making aspect of the session.
Art as Therapy groups will be focused around a specific art project with the goal of enjoying the experience of making art as a form of relaxation. The idea behind these groups is “art as therapy” meaning the act of creating art is itself therapeutic and
good for the soul.
Individual Art Therapy
Adults and children can both benefit from individual art therapy sessions where specific goals can be addressed.
*Each individual art therapy session is based around the individual’s goals and needs. The art materials are used as a form of communication and expression. It’s important to note that within art therapy, there is no “wrong” way to create art and there is no “bad” art. The art therapist and client will look at the art created together discuss topics relating to the artwork and therapeutic goals