Saturday, August 14, 2010

How Art Therapy Works...

How art therapy works:

We all have walls up that keep people from getting too close. We have them in our language, through speaking to one another in words as well as in body language. We have not learned how to put those walls up when we are creating art. The process of being creative calls people to be fully expressed, not held back. This allows things to come up naturally.

Art does not lie. Things that we did not know were going on with us come out in the art work. Just like it comes out in our dreams, art work is created without a filter that tries to restrain it. In art therapy, this process allows us to talk about what is going on as well as gives the creator an outlet to express him or herself and become aware of self.

This process allows things to come up quickly, so it is important for the art therapist to be aware of this and work with the client to establish trust in the therapeutic relationship first. This is necessary before too much is shared and the client can become scared by her vulnerability. The process must go at the client's pace or it can become detrimental. Have a sensitivity to what can negatively affect the client is important as an art therapist. This sensitivity is acquired through clinical experience and is vital to creating a healthy therapeutic relationship.

When the balance between creating art and being able to open up and trust the process is found, the experience can be magical and more than worthwhile.

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