Art for Wellbeing can be focused on...
All life is about relationship; to the various parts of ourselves, to significant others, our family, our work, our creativity, the world, our culture, to time and to the stories we carry and buy into. Art therapy offers a way to freshly explore any of these relationships and to attend to them.
Patient stories I documented in the film project I undertook during my Masters Of Fine Arts at UNSW revealed that some chronic conditions bio medicine treats as purely physical can have significant emotional factors below conscious awareness. When uncovered the disturbance was affected at its source. The conditions of these patients amazingly just faded away through therapy with a doctor who was both a psychotherapist and immunologist. See this page, Medicine as an Art.
Art therapy is different to what this doctor does, but I have witnessed significant shifts through this work. In testimonials you'll find Natalie's account of her healing through our therapy together.
Ideally if there is a mind/body issue which may have an emotional base it is best to address this in conjunction with a sympathetic GP.
The Female Cycle
Exploring what is behind an irregular or painful cycle can point to emotional factors. That said, it is also best to check with a doctor. The cycle can reflect relationship issues, particularly with your partner. Negative attitudes to the female cycle abound, so pain can also reflect dominant cultural atttitudes.
Alexandra Pope, author of The Wild Genie frames the menstrual cycle as a template or map of the creative process. This may seem like an odd idea initally but travelling with the cycle in this way can aid the flow of your energy and creativity, enriching you and directing you towards your female power.
Art therapy provides creative self reflection for young adults that is empowering, non judgemental and often fun. As its about drawing out the person's own answers so for teenagers wanting to develop their own understanding about themselves and the world Art Therapy can be an effective.
Commemorative art processes can help with loss. Creating art can help to express intense feelings and can also be a great way to honour the person, and your life together.
The grief felt after a beloved companion animal passes is also intense as bonds with animals can reach right into us. Again commenorative art processes can offer a way to honour their passing and serve as a reminder of their part in your life.
Art therapy can help with some addictions. When a person really wants to change, discovering the emotional basis of an addiction can help in the process. The testimonial of a client who shed a marihuana addiction through combining art therapy sessions with energy work, is on the Testimonial page.