Art Psychotherapy for Children, Adolescents & Adults

"Healing and going beyond words. Art is a wound turned into light. Creating artwork allows your mind to be in a safe place while it contemplates the tougher issues you are dealing with. One can use the tools of brush, paint, pastels and crayons to expose and, even for a short time color those issues in a different light."

Georges Braque & George E. Miller

Art Psychotherapy is an evidence-based psychological treatment that uses art-making as the main form of expression in the sessions. At Psych Connect, we feel that art psychotherapy is better referred to as "therapy without barriers."

It is the use of artistic methods to treat psychological disorders and/or improve mental health. The technique is rooted in the idea that creative expressions can foster healing, growth and personal emotional well-being. Art psychotherapy can be effectively applied to clients who experience emotional/ psychological/ physical distress that robs them from leading a fulfilling life. Making art and reflecting on the artwork helps them resolve their core conflicts in creative and compassionate ways.

Art psychotherapy is non-intrusive and can tap into the rich non-verbal aspects of communication and creativity.The goal is to aid with self-expression and development of new coping mechanisms through improved personal insight.This will help to improve the mental wellbeing and quality of life of individuals by acknowledging and recognising feelings that have been buried. This will further help to manage existing psychological disorders.

We provide art psychotherapy for children as young as infants through to adult years. Our therapists have worked with infants as young as 4 months old.

Our therapists are able to provide art psychotherapy through:

  • Individual sessions
  • Group sessions
  • Couples sessions
  • Family sessions
  • via E-Therapy (or Teletherapy)

The following are some of the areas we offer psychotherapy for:

  • Adoption
  • Anger Management
  • Anxiety / Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Attention Deficit Disorder & Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD)
  • Behavioural Issues
  • Bullying
  • Childhood Depression and Anxiety
  • Chronic Illness / Palliative Care
  • Dyslexia
  • Dyspraxia
  • Dysgraphia
  • Dyscalculia
  • Downs Syndrome
  • Disrupted Attachment Patterns
  • Eating Disorders
  • Emotional Regulation
  • Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders (such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
  • Gender Identity issues
  • Grief and Loss
  • Low Self-Esteem
  • Learning Problems
  • Issues related to parental separation or divorce
  • Peri and post natal issues
  • Physical challenges (such as a loss of mobility, paralysis, Cerebral Palsy, Spina Bifida)
  • Pain Management
  • Personality Disorders
  • Psychosis
  • Communication and Language Difficulties
  • Social Communication Disorder (SCD)
  • School Stress
  • Selective Mutism
  • Social Skills
  • Sensory Processing Issues
  • Transitions (e.g. moving to a new school, or country)
  • Trauma and PTSD

Frequently Asked Questions

Art psychotherapist differentiates the goals of art therapy and the way s/he provides art therapy, depending on client's strengths and areas of needs. Therapy process includes but not limited to painting, drawing, sculpting, photography, and digital art. It can be individual, dyad or group sessions.

It starts with a conversation. Every therapeutic relationship starts with an initial consultation. During this time, our art psychotherapists will get to know you and what has brought you into the therapy space. They will share more about the approach as well as answer any questions you may have about your work. The first consult also naturall unfolds into the second part of your work - the assessment. These first few art therapy sessions are usually used to explore more deeply what goals or issues you may have for your art therapy sessions. During ongoing art psychotherapy sessions, you and your therapist will journey together to explore these issues. Your therapist will also regularly review your goals, progress and need for therapy with you.

  1. Being artistically inclined is required

Artistic abilities are not a pre-requisite for art therapy. Individuals of all ages including children, tends, adults and elderly can equally benefit from Art therapy despite having no prior background.

  1. Art psychotherapy is the same as art class

Art psychotherapy involves significant professional training and experience. Over the last 60 years, the profession has progressed, with standards of training and a body of research to guide credentialed practitioners in ethical practice of art psychotherapy. Art Psychotherapists hold a postgraduate Master’s certification in this field, and also often have a background in visual arts or working with vulnerable people. This gives them extensive training in the use of both psychotherapy, and visual language in the therapy room. Presently, Art Psychotherapy is practiced in a wide variety of settings (e.g., hospitals, psychiatric and rehabilitation facilities, schools and private practice). Engaging in therapeutic art activities as advertised by non-art therapists is inaccurate as art therapy can only be practiced an individual who possess the required training, certification and/or state licensure. Bona fide art therapy is beyond the scope of practice for non-art psychotherapists.

  1. Adult colouring books are Art therapy

While colouring books are not discouraged for recreation and self-care, colouring activities differ from art psychotherapy services provided by a credentialed art therapists. Oftentimes, colouring books are inaccurately termed art psychotherapy in their branding. Colouring is an active process that may serve as externalising focus and redirecting individuals preoccupied with unhealthy internal dialogue. However, this is not equal to the inherent art-making that occurs in art psychotherapy. Furthermore, under the guidance of an art psychotherapist, individuals may realise certain images speak to their internal experiences in ways that foster deeper understanding.

  1. Art is just for children

Art therapy is not “just for children”! It can be used with a wide range of ages, and conditions, as long as the person is open to using art materials to express themselves. It can be especially useful for people who find it difficult to talk about what they are thinking, feeling or experiencing currently, and may find it easier to work visually.

  1. Reduction of stress and anxiety
  2. Positive improvements on mental health
  3. Relief from emotional trauma, physical violence, domestic abuse