What is meant by art therapy?

Art therapy can be explained as a therapeutic technique that has rooted the idea – creative expression can help in mental wellbeing and foster healing. Art is an excellent tool for mental health treatment. As an expansive medium, the art is used for communicating with clients, overcome stress and discover different features of one’s own personalities. The utilization of artistic methods helps in treating psychological disorders. It improves mental health that is referred to as art therapy.

What are the uses of art therapy?

Art therapy is used in treating a wide variety of psychological distress and mental disorders. In several cases, it is used in combination with other psychotherapy methods like cognitive behavioral therapy or group therapy. Certain situations where art therapy could be utilized are:

· Children with learning incapacities
· Children suffering from social or behavioral problems at home or at school
· Individuals experiencing mental health issues
· Adults facing severe stress
· Individuals who have suffered due to brain injury
· Adults or children who have undergone a traumatic event

How does it work?

The art therapist would use various art methods including collage, sculpture, painting, and drawing with clients varying from young kids to the elderly. It is possible for the clients who have experienced depression, anxiety, domestic abuse, physical violence, emotional trauma,and various other psychological issues to benefit by expressing themselves artistically.

Community organizations, schools, individual mental health workplaces, and hospitals are possible places where it is possible to avail the art therapy services.

The majority of art therapy sessions focus on inner experience. It means it deals with your imagination, perceptions,and feelings.The art therapy would involve certain art techniques and learning skills. The emphasis is mostly on expressing and developing images which come from within the person rather than obtained from the outside world. When you attend certain art classes, you would find that you would be asked to draw or paint from your imagination. According to art therapy, it is necessary to give importance to your thoughts, feelings, images,and thoughts of your own world.

How to be a successful art therapist?

If you are interested in art therapy and wish to take as a main career, you need to have certain qualifications. The laws differ from one state to another. But in the majority of cases, you have to become an approved social worker, professional counselor or clinical psychologist to provide psychotherapy services.
It is best to check with your state so that you can know more about the training, education and professional authorizations that are required to run-through art therapy.

The minimum requirements to provide psychotherapy services as per the American Art Therapy Association are as follows:

The candidate should have a master’s degree in the subject- Art therapy

The candidate should have a master’s degree in psychology, counseling or other associated courses that involves art therapy.

It is also necessary to have a supervised experience apart from their post-graduate degree. The ATCB provides credentialing programs which permit art therapists to turn into a board certified, licensed or registered art therapists.

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