Art therapy – explained?

Maker:S,Date:2017-9-9,Ver:6,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar02,E-Y         Salford          Van Gogh       

The right side of our Brain deals with much of our creativity

It does not count time, is unjudemental , and far quieter than the busy left side.  So, if we can tap into this wealth of often unused creativity which is located deep within the right brain we can benefit greatly from the sense of calm and relaxation it brings through painting.

How do we know when we are in right brain mode?   Well, not until we come out of it, and look back. For example, have you ever ‘forgotten time’ when you were engrossed in a good book – then you were in right brain mode.  And it is during this unique time that the entire brain is able for a short while to withdraw itself, repair & relax.

When we paint we begin to tap into the wealth of unused creativity located deep within the right brain. We can begin to express with images that which we may not be able or willing to express with words. When we give a voice to our feelings & emotions we can slowly begin to repair ourselves.

Our need to control our environment through the use of painted images is deeply rooted in our collective memory. As early Humans we would try to control our environment by painting on our cave wall – perhaps a successful hunt – then we could eat and survive another day.

Painting – for a short while – can help us feel in control of our chaotic lives.

As an art teacher – and by default an art therapist – I have seen children discover self control, learning to focus through art. For many that I have taught, English has not been their first language, and they may just have arrived emotionally scared from a war torn country. They may have a diagnosis on the Autism scale; special needs, ADHD, and / or emotional & behavioural difficulties.  However, they have all been able to watch and discover the power of art, and then go onto express themselves during my art class, and begin to heal themselves.

Adults in my classes often express to me how painting has helped them cope with daily life, and all its problems, from the emotional to the medical.  Finally, through my work as an Honorary art therapist in a Manchester Hospital, I have been advised by the medical staff that the improvement to some patients health was remarkable, and sometimes effective where other non-medical treatments failed.

Renowned Educationalist Sir Ken Robinson expresses my sentiments when he says “Art is as important as Maths & English in Schools.”