art therapist

In Art Asylum there is a tradition of meditative art therapy. The Art studio is next to the Meditation suite and I work with the meditation groups on projects such as Mandala Therapy. A lot of the art therapy sessions begin with meditation rituals. Those who arrive in Art Asylum feeling very stressed often find these techniques helpful so that they can focus on the activity of painting and drawing. Sometimes this helps them work through feelings of fear and anger and transmit these feelings into the artwork. There are some in the group who want to tell a story, express a message in a picture about things that have disturbed them.
Some want to create pictures in which they can feel calm and happy to escape the inner turmoil. We get a lot of imagery of deep underground caves in which lone figures are huddled up. These pictures may be sad but even just the physical activity in working on the picture may be progress. In the group we can take an interest in the picture and encourage the artist to talk about the work, the content. A lot of people like to do abstract art sometimes because they are inhibited about their graphic skills, or because they went to Art School. I try to look for hints of imagery in pictures and encourage people to develop images as well as patterns.
We have an Art Therapy cat, called Scribble, who makes us laugh.