Art Therapy / Learn and Relax

According to Wikipedia, “therapy” literally means curing, or healing. That is how art therapy is used in Art “Therapy”.

Art therapy can be used to help address the complex issues that can arise following the diagnosis of a life limiting illness. Sometimes it can be hard to talk about difficulties and feelings, so art therapy can allow people to express these in a safe environment, using art instead of spoken words.

You may benefit from art therapy if:
  • You are struggling to adjust to diagnosis or treatment
  • You are anxious or afraid
  • You are feeling overwhelmed, sad or tearful
  • You are confused or angry
  • You are struggling to adjust to the changes that your disease and treatment have brought to your life
  • You are finding it difficult to sleep
  • You are feeling uncertainty about the future
  • You are experiencing feelings of loss of control
  • Your illness has brought to mind past issues or times in your life which you find unsettling.

No matter how you are feeling, art therapy can help you express your emotions, in an atmosphere of support and understanding.

The role of the therapist is to be a facilitator and listener rather than an art teacher. The creative process is the focus of the session, and it is through this framework that feelings can be acknowledged and worked through.

Making art is a non-medicinal way to stimulate dopamine – the chemical associated with the reward center in your brain. Increased levels of dopamine make us feel happy and relaxed, which is what all of us really need right now, more than ever.

Research shows that drawing, coloring, and other fine motor activities help to activate the parasympathetic nervous system and calm the fight or flight response, easing stress and unleashing creativity. Seriously!!! Painting pictures, dancing, knitting, sewing, baking cakes… all have positive benefits for mental health.

Drawing is one of the most important activities you and your family can do. Drawing not only provides the basis for other creative activities – like painting, sculpture and printmaking – but it also provides a direct link with reading, writing and especially mathematics. Drawing is the single most accessible form of art available. All you need (to begin with), is a pencil and a sheet of paper.

Learn how to draw, paint and design by following our illustrated step by step instructions. We are building a growing resource of free art tutorials that are designed to improve your artistic skills and to increase your enjoyment in creating artworks.

Art lessons share the knowledge, understanding and experience of art and design to encourage you to develop your own artistic voice. Our lessons explore a variety of drawing, painting and design techniques across a range of subjects and styles. In each lesson we lead you through an illustrated step by step development of the artwork from its initial stages to the finished example.

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