Virtual Art Therapy
What to expect? How does virtual art therapy work?
In a virtual art therapy session, you will have the opportunity, as you would in person, to explore your thoughts, feelings and behaviors through both talk therapy and the creative art process. A session will start with defining your intention for the session and to express what you are needing for that day. You may want to utilize the session to express feelings of anger, hurt, sadness, loneliness or anxiousness that you have been feeling, but have been struggling to talk about or share. You may want to use the session to de-stress and relax by engaging in a process-oriented session, in which you are directed by the therapist to use a certain material or engage in a process such as watercolor painting or zentangling (it’s ok if you do not have experience!). At the end of a session, the client and art therapist will discuss the artmaking process and any reflections and insights one might have after engaging in the session.
Each session can be tailored to what you are needing that day. Some days may be focused solely on artmaking and some days may focus on talking through what is needed. Some clients will want to work on an extended project that lasts multiple weeks and others may want to create something in one session, both options are available to you.
Do I need artistic skills to participate in virtual art therapy?
Everyone has the capacity and capability to express their feelings, thoughts and desires through their own creative expression using imagery, language, writing, music and movement. You do not need any formal training or artistic background to create! All that is needed is an openness and willingness to participate in the art experience.
What Will I Need to Prepare for a Virtual Session?
Prior to the start of your virtual art therapy session, you may want to create a designated space where you can spread out the materials that you may want to use along with setting up a space for the device that you will be utilizing to attend the virtual session. For your first virtual art therapy session, you and your art therapist will discuss your relationship with art and art materials, what you are comfortable and uncomfortable with and what your intentions are for utilizing the creative art process in your therapy. You may have an idea of what materials you may want to use, such as paper, colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, chalk pastels, paints or clay. You may also seek direction from the art therapist as to what might be the most appropriate art materials to utilize based on your needs and intentions for a project.
Benefits of an Virtual Art Therapy Session
A virtual art therapy session is unique in that you will be working from your own designated space in which you will be able to create art utilizing materials and objects within your reach. Some people enjoy incorporating ‘found objects’ from around their home to utilize in an art therapy session, such as photographs, fabrics/textiles, newspaper, shoe boxes/jewelry boxes, etc. In a virtual art therapy session, you are able to maintain your art project within the safety of your home and have the ability to utilize your preferred materials. Oftentimes, setting up the art space and cleaning up can take away time for the art therapy session in person. In a virtual art therapy session, the client has the ability to prepare before a session starts and clean up after as session ends to optimize time making art in session.