Art has long been a way for people to communicate and express emotion, and to evoke something in others. It has also been used to heal. As a treatment, art therapy was formalised in the 1940s, after doctors noticed how those with mental health problems used art (like drawing) to express themselves. Following this, research began to investigate how the creation of art offers healing properties which can be used as a treatment for mental ill-health.
Indeed, creativity takes many forms, for instance in talking therapy, the use of metaphor. Art offers another creative way to work through mental health issues. It can facilitate expression, and provides a unique way of working through psychological and emotional problems.
Art therapy uses the creative process to aid exploration and self-expression. It is not about how being ‘artistic’, or the end product, rather the process is the focus.
The way art therapy differs from an art class is that it is not focused on technique, instead it is about the inner process, this can lead to the expression of emotions, offer a therapeutic release for stress, lead to insights, understanding, self-awareness, improved self-esteem, social and coping skills, and exploration of our inner world.
Art therapy encapsulates various forms, including: collage, doodling, scribbling, colouring, drawing, finger painting, photography, clay work, sculpting, and painting. As the artwork takes form, clients are facilitated by the therapist to take a step back to assess and understand what they have created and how this impacts them emotionally.
You may notice conflicts, or themes and learn about how these impact thoughts, feelings, and behaviour. Art therapy can be taken on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, sessions last 50 minutes.
Art therapy has proven useful for clients who have anxiety, depression, severe stress, trauma, those who have experienced physical violence and domestic abuse, dealing with illness or life-limiting diagnosis, and other mental health issues. It is also helpful for children who have behavioural difficulties, social problems, learning disabilities, autism, schizophrenia, psychosis, or people who have sustained brain injury.
We offer Art therapy in Birmingham. Phinity Therapy also serve other cities and countries through our network of qualified therapists. Online therapy is also available, catering for those who cannot reach our clinic or have busy schedules.
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