Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Artist Trading Cards

I was reading an article in a kids' crafts magazine about Artist Trading Cards. For a recent Art Therapy supervision, I had everyone make a card based on how they were feeling at the time or what was going on at the time with them. I think this could be used as a directive in Art Therapy groups, especially with kids or teens. The two rules for Artist Trading Cards are that they must be 2.5" x 3.5" and they can only be traded, not sold. I made my own blank cards using bristol board. You can buy baseball card sleeves to hold them. Check out the website www.atcsforall.com for more info.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Paint Chip Directive

This directive can be used in groups, supervision, or your own altered art/journal. I used it during Art Therapy supervision, and asked everyone to choose a color from one of the paint chips that I had gotten from the hardware store. You can choose based on the color or the name of the color, depending how you feel at the moment. Then, everyone created an image based on the color they chose. Some were abstract, others were more literal. This can be a creative way to express current feelings or past memories.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Altered Book/Art Journaling Idea

My mother recently sent me some old sheet music of my grandmother's from the 1920s-1950s.  Most is in too poor condition to sell or even use, so I told my mom that I could use it to do art work.  I brought it to supervision this week and found a song called "Paradise."  I used magazine images and paint to create a collage to fit the title of the song.  This idea can be used as an Art Therapy directive or just a way to start your project.  The authentic quality of the sheet music adds a nice touch to the art piece.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Art Workshop

The Union I belong to provides us with 2 Professional Development Days per year. This year, I decided to offer an Art Workshop in the community, providing a day of creating art journals, altered books, and other creative projects.  I was able to reserve a room at the public library for free, and asked participants to bring a journal, old book, or scrap book/album to use.  I also encouraged them to bring photos, mementos, and any other items they would like to include in their project.  A couple participants had not had much art experience, so they were able to learn new techniques and get ideas for projects.  For a couple of us, it was a nice opportunity to do some art work and be creative for an uninterrupted period of time.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Art Therapy Inservice

Recently, a few Art Therapists at the hospital provided an inservice to the rest of the Rehabilitation department which also comprises Recreation and Music Therapists. We talked about what Art Therapy is, how we have used it to treat sex offenders, and we had the group do a short directive to get a feel for the Art Therapy process. We asked them to draw a stressful or difficult interaction with a patient. After, everyone was welcome to share their drawing if they felt like it. It was a good opportunity to help colleagues understand what Art Therapy is like, and it also served as a sort of supervision where staff could talk about what has been going on with them at work.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Termination in Supervision

Recently, another Art Therapist at the hospital moved on to a new opportunity. She had originally started a Mail Art group for the sex offenders which they really enjoyed. So, on her last day, during supervision, the other Art Therapists in the group all made her a post card, and wrote a personal message to her. She gave us her new address and we sent her our "Mail Art." This was a fun and creative way to say good-bye, share some memories of our experiences, and express sentiments about our work together.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Coloring Mandalas

A couple of weeks ago, I covered a group with another Art Therapist. The group was Coloring Mandalas, and the group members could choose pre-printed mandala designs to color in using colored pencil, markers, gel pens, pastels, or paint. The group members showed care and effort in coloring the mandalas. They socialized and joked around. The group was designed to help participants relax and enjoy themselves. This is a healthy coping skill for the sex offenders to develop and practice, and can help with stress management. You can find free mandalas to print at websites such as http://www.free-mandala.com/en/start.html and http://www.free-printable-mandala-coloring-pages.com/free-mandalas-to-color.shtml

Friday, January 28, 2011

Art Journaling

I recently covered the Art Journaling group for a colleague. The group addresses high risk factors for sex offenders, and the day's topic was addressing how this population views women as deceptive. The directive was to create an image about a time that a woman did something genuinely nice for you. The responses were varied, including one man who had a hard time thinking of any time that had happened to him. He had difficulty in his relationships because he never felt love and affection from his parents. Another patient talked about how he felt when his fiancee had bought him gifts. Others talked about the love they had felt from their mother and grandmother. Though one man said that his mother doted on him so much that he used to compare the love of all women to that of his mother, and that adversely affected his relationships with women. The technique the group participants used was silhouetting, and they all seemed to enjoy the creative process.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Male vs. Female energy

My colleague presented at the AATA conference about male and female energy since the field of Art Therapy is dominated by women. He talked about his presentation during a recent supervision, and the Art Therapists were invited to make art about the topic. It was an interesting discussion since most of the group are women working with male sex offenders who alternately need male and female energy depending on the situation. The Art Therapists at the hospital have had to be more in touch with both their male and female sides in order to work with this population. Much of the art work depicted an integration of the male and female energies. A great topic for thought and discussion, with staff or with patients.