Art filled occupational voids, distracted thoughts of illness.
Improved well-being by decreasing negative emotions and increasing positive ones. Improved medical outcomes, trends toward reduced depression. Reductions in stress and anxiety; increases in positive emotions. Reductions in distress and negative emotions. Improvements in flow and spontaneity, expression of grief, positive identity, and social networks.
For children, the benefits of Art Therapy are profound. She later developed and implemented a clinical art therapy program for Applewood Centers, Inc.
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We spoke to Miller about her career path and the particulars of working with a younger set of art therapy patients. Mandala Collage collage, chalk pastels on paper : "Working within the containment of a circle mandala often can be centering and provide a calm space for self-discovery. This mandala was created in an art therapy group for at risk teens to invite exploration around self-esteem. Using magazine photo collage as a material of choice can be a non-threatening approach to encourage teens to explore their feelings, thoughts, and values without anxiety about drawing skills.
For starters, how do you define art therapy? I define art therapy as the psychological use of art media and the creative process, facilitated by an art therapist, to help foster self expression, create coping skills, and strengthen sense of self. Using the artistic process to help people explore different challenges and things they're facing in their life. How did you become involved with the field?
I've always been involved in art, since I was a child. In high school I became interested in mental health and psychopathology. In college I started to explore more of the art therapy field. I was very fortunate to go to a school that had an art therapy degree in undergrad. Combining my love of the practice of art and psychology, and getting to help people in need, it was a perfect fit for me.
After that I got a graduate degree in art therapy. Safe House Image crayons and markers on paper : "Re-establishing safety is an essential component to working with youth who have experienced trauma and loss.
This drawing was created in response to exploring what it means to have a safe home with a child who had been exposed to family violence. How did you get started working with children?
I had some experience as an undergrad doing volunteer placements with youths. I had envisioned myself back then working more with adults, but my real first job was in a residential treatment program serving boys ages six to 16, and at that time, I just wanted experience with people. Did you end up enjoying the experience? I enjoy working with adolescents a lot.
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They're a challenge. They definitely keep me on my toes in that age range. It's just a natural expression for kids to use art. That creativity is very freeing and the imagination is so open at that age. It lends itself so well to the therapeutic process and making art.
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I love their energy and the inspiration that they bring. Mask acrylic paint and markers on paper pulp mask : "Mask making can offer a powerful way to safely externalize emotional states that a child is experiencing. In response to exploring a feeling that sometimes remains bottled up inside; painting or creating a mask can reveal and identify many feelings difficult to describe in words.
What kinds of challenges are the children you're working with facing? Art Therapy is used to improve cognitive and sensory-motor functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate emotional resilience, promote insight, enhance social skills, reduce and resolve conflicts and distress and advance societal and ecological change. At Lucile Packard Children's Hospital , patients are able to express their thoughts and feelings through individualized art therapy sessions.
Art therapy interventions facilitate the creation of art throughout a traditional talk therapy session. The art making process initiated in a session provides an opportunity for control where patients have little or no control over their hospital admission.
Children may not have the words to communicate their thoughts and feelings, art making can support them in discovering the words to describe their personal and medical experiences.
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