what does arts therapy look like?

As many of you know, I’m studying to become an arts therapist.  I am loving it.  And it challenges me to the core: artistically, mentally, emotionally and physically.  I just thought I’d dispel a few myths while I’m here about arts therapy.

Art therapy sessions are not about creating a piece of art that is aligned along design principles.  Many art therapy clients aren’t arty and don’t make their drawing/sculpture/collage/painting look like anything real.

An art therapy session is often shapes, squiggles, tangled or intersecting lines or symbols on the paper.  Art therapy allows an emotion, memory or an issue to surface and puts it onto the paper as colour and shapes. There are sometimes visual metaphors that emerge.  Maybe the best way is to show you what I mean. BTW, an arts therapist doesn’t interpret the art at all.

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