Expressive Arts Therapy
The Center utilizes Natalie Rogers person-centered approach to expressive arts therapy which evolved out of her father's person-centered counseling philosophy. Carl Rogers believed that the individual was capable of examining their inner and outer world and making healthy choices about their future. Utilizing color, form, sumbols and movement allows the individual to explore unconscious motivations and assign their own particular meaning to their work. According to Rogers, principles of person-centered expressive arts therapy include:
- Personal growth through self-awareness and insight.
- Transforming feelings into a source of energy through art forms thus providing a release.
- Every individual is inately creative.
- Creative process is healing in itself.
- Expressive arts allow us to delve ino our unconscious to explore unknown aspects of ourselves.
- The product of creativity can offer messages or information.
- Art modalities are connected. i.e.:how I paint affects my writing, how I move affects my painting.
At our center in Charlotte NC, we use expressive arts therapy techniques, where appropriate, in counseling sessions as well as many of our art classes. One example is the mandala (pictured), which means "circle" in Sanskit. The mandala is found throughout nature in flowers, fruits, etc. and is used in many reliegions for meditation, healing and prayer. In therapy the mandala can represent wholeness of the self. Drawing mandalas can be relaxing, insightful and even fun. There are endless possibilites for self-expression. Other interventions include visual journaling, mask-making, felting, handbuilding with clay, yoga meditation, creative movement/drama and Open Studio Process. Fot more information, please email or call Maria.
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