Expressive Art Therapy

Expressive art therapy uses the creative arts as a form of therapy. Similar to art or dance therapy, expressive art therapy uses the creative process of each individual to promote healing. The goal of expressive art therapy is to facilitate self-discovery, increased awareness, connection and understanding. The act of creating art helps to unlock the expression of inner feelings, and the creative process is the path toward better emotional health. Rather than focusing on the final product, the process of creation via nonverbal language is the emphasis. This type of therapy is often used with children, who may participate in music, movement, or finger painting while the therapist observes the activity and encourages the child to talk about the experience. Adult clients might journal, dance, or create videos in order to connect better with themselves and others. Think this approach might be right for you? Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s expressive art therapy specialists today.

Meet the specialists

 

Expressive Art is utilized throughout treatment in combination with Play Therapy and Sand Tray.

— Anthony Dimitrion, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Ridgewood, NJ

Sometimes, the words we use to describe what we are going through (talking) doesn't completely explain our pain or difficulties. Some things are difficult to put into words, yet are felt and sensed quite clearly. This is where non-verbal practices (art, movement, music, writing, storytelling, ritual) can be helpful, as they express--via creativity--the how, what and why of our situation. I am trained in facilitating expressive arts therapy sessions, and have simple tools to offer.

— Amanda Rebel, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Denver, CO
 

Expressive arts therapy is a great way to get children and teens more involved inter own therapy. I have a Master degree in Arts Education from FSU. I work with clients using art, music and crafts to help them express their emotions and learn more about themselves.

— Kim Martinez, Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Tampa, FL

"Expressive Arts Therapy - is the practice of using imagery, storytelling, dance, music, drama, poetry, movement, dreamwork, and visual arts, in an integrated way, to foster human growth, development and healing." ~ Appalachian Expressive Arts Collective

— Taisir El-Souessi, Creative Art Therapist in Asheville, NC
 

I believe that every client I encounter has different needs and ways of approaching their own healing. My treatment orientation is tailored to each individual and one of the most creative ways we can approach treatment together is through the expressive arts. Whether you want to write a song together in session, paint a mountain, or create stress balls. Expressing yourself alternatively in session can and has shown to be really transformative for the clients I've worked with.

— Ashante Taylorcox, Associate Professional Counselor in Marlton, NJ
 

The arts are therapeutic tools in my world, meaning I draw, write, dance, and paint a lot and love to incorporate these modalities into therapy sessions. In using the arts, you will find that you access different ways of thinking than when you process simply using analytical thought, reason, and conversation (which are also great tools!). By feeling into your experience and expressing it in more than one way, you can discover more about yourself, and learn new skills for managing your emotions.

— Anna McDonald, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in San Francisco, CA
 

Expressive Arts Therapy (EXA) is an effective and powerful way of working that is different from traditional talk therapy. While talking is a part of the process and how we make meaning of our world, there are often things that we don't have words for. Using visual art, movement, and creative writing, we access our -physical -mental & -emotional levels of awareness and can gain insight into how we have been stuck in certain patterns of understanding and relating to ourselves and others.

— Jennie Powe Runde, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Oakland, CA
 

Words are powerful, but sometimes get in the way, especially when we are trying to express the deepest, most powerful parts of ourselves. When that happens, the arts provide an opportunity to playfully connect to feelings in new and often surprising ways. In music therapy we use our voices, musical instruments and recorded music, but may also bring in other mediums like movement or visual arts. No previous experience necessary - it's not about how it looks or sounds, but how it feels to do it.

— Al Hoberman, Creative Art Therapist in New York, NY

Expressive Arts Therapy can assist us in reengaging our imagination to dream up creative solutions to our current struggles, strengthen coping, bolster resilience give voice to oppressed parts of ourselves, and give us vision for our future goals. It can be a powerful way to access difficult content through metaphor & externalizations of of internalized pain. I have practice using visual art, music, drama, poetry, writing & dance in therapy.

— Jonathan Julian, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Oakland, CA
 

I utilize art to work with you on a variety of different emotions that might be more difficult to talk about. Are allows you to express how you are feeling in ways that words sometimes can't capture. You don't have to be a good artist to do art therapy. I'm not certified as a Art Therapist but I use a great deal of techniques from that schooling to help my patients with their depression and anxiety to better understand where they are in their pain and how to cope.

— Julie Goch, Counselor in Canton, OH

I have my BA in Women's Studies and Theatre Arts from UC Santa Cruz and my Master's in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in Drama therapy from California Institute of Integral Studies. My practice is infused with creative arts methods including drama, visual arts, movement, storytelling, and sand tray therapies.

— Sarah Korda, Counselor in San Francisco, CA
 

I have extensive training in several art mediums from high school and college. During my masters in counseling program, I focused on the use of the arts in counseling. Since beginning my career in counseling, I have incorporated this experience and research into my work with clients and have pursued additional training to hone my integration skill.

— Andrea Tackore, Psychotherapist in Winter Park, FL

As a Registered Drama Therapist, I am trained to use dramatic and other creative techniques along with verbal therapy in sessions. Please read the "Drama therapy" page on my website for details about drama therapy.

— Krista Verrastro, Creative Art Therapist in Reisterstown, MD
 

Words are powerful, but sometimes get in the way, especially when we are trying to express the deepest, most powerful parts of ourselves. The arts provide an opportunity to playfully connect to feelings in new and often surprising ways. In music therapy we use our voices, musical instruments and recorded music, but may also bring in other media like movement or visual arts. No previous experience necessary - it's not about how it looks or sounds, but how it feels to do it.

— Al Hoberman, Creative Art Therapist in New York, NY

I am certified in person-centered expressive arts therapy through Dr. Natalie Rogers at Saybrook University, and in movement-based expressive arts through Tamalpa Institute. Sometimes words are not enough to express what's happening or what you are feeling. Expressive arts include the whole person. By activating right-brain processes, they let you not only communicate what words cannot, but also tap into the natural wisdom of your body and free its ability to heal.

— Claudia Hartke, Psychologist in Boulder, CO
 

I am a registered play therapist who chooses to use many aspects of expressive art such as music, writing, & art in my work with adults especially when working on trauma.

— Monique LCSW, Clinical Social Worker in Little Rock, AR

Playwright, Screenwriter, director and producer.

— Shontae Graham, Counselor in ,
 

In addition to traditional art therapy, I also use other forms of expressive therapies including narrative, geek therapy, comic therapy, and use gamification to help clients achieve their goals.

— Alison Maples, Counselor in Royal Oak, MI

Even people who say "I'm not an artist" or "I can't draw" find that expressing themselves creatively gives them insight. Sometimes words aren't enough. Expressive therapy taps into emotions, sensations and memories, to discover sources of pain and light.

— Lisa Hedden, Counselor in Tucker, GA

My degree is in counseling psychology with a focus on expressive arts therapy. I studied and practice; dance/movement therapy, somatic experiencing, poetry therapy, art therapy, music therapy, play therapy, and drama therapy. Creativity is a fotce for healing.

— Genevieve Saenz, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX
 

Music therapy is a powerful medium. Unique outcomes are possible. In music therapy, each individual is provided support and encouragement in the acquisition of new skills and abilities. Because music touches each person in so many different ways, participation in music therapy offers opportunities for learning, creativity and expression that may be significantly different from more traditional therapeutic approaches.

— Megan Dozler, Creative Art Therapist in Napa, CA