art · art therapy

Art Therapy Journal

I have been an art therapist for over 10 years. I work with all ages and types of diagnosis.

ART THERAPY

Art Therapy explores feelings through the creative process of making art. When making art it reduces stress and anxiety.

Benefits of Art Therapy:

  • Improve social skills
  • Process past trauma
  • Reduces stress
  • Improve self-awareness
  • Express emotions and thoughts
  • Recognizing own strengths and weaknesses
  • Increase creative skills
  • Learn coping mechanisms
  • Experience feels of empowerment

(This is only information, not in replacement of seeking therapy from a professional in your area)

ART JOURNAL

Most clients love the concept of an art journal. An art journal ling can take place of client’s writing. Some don’t like to write, words don’t come easy to them and others rather express their thoughts and emotions using other mediums.

The supplies needed are:

  • paint brushes
  • paint-acrylic or tempera/watercolor
  • crayons
  • colored pencils
  • oil pastels
  • soft pastels
  • art sketch book for a journal-8″x11″

Directive

  1. Choose the supplies you want to work with for the art journal entry.
  2. Close your eye, or look at a spot on the floor, take a few deep breaths.
  3. Relax your body and focus on your breathing.
  4. Think of a word that describes your day or your feeling.
  5. Once you have an idea of how to express your day or feelings using the creative process, open your eyes and begin creating.
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from my own art journal
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from my own art journal

 

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A Blissful Painting

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I was given a painting marbling kit as a gift for the Christmas Season. Today I woke up after sleeping for 10 hrs. Trust me, I needed that amount of sleep, been seeing more clients than usual for counseling this week. It was exhausting and definitely my mind was not functioning very well by Saturday evening.

All the supplies are included in the kit except a baking pan and paper. A baking pan is needed to lay your canvas on.

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Pour Your Bliss deluxe art kit

Layout everything on your work table. Definitely need a cloth to cover your table.

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supplies in the kit

Here is the instructions that are included in the kit.

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Directions

Below is the layout of my work table.

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Painting table set up

Below is a video of my demonstration of the Paint Pour Bliss Deluxe Kit.

This is one of the marbling paintings.

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It was enjoyable. Blues and silvers and purples are not exactly my favorite color scheme. But it was relaxing and allowed me to not focus on details rather it was an experience where I would have to trust the process.

I would do this type of painting again, definitely with more of my color choices of the bright reds, oranges and yellows and turquoise.

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Dot Mandala Painting

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Dot Mandala painted by Caroline

Facts about Mandalas

  • A mandala is a Sanskirt meaning Circle.  It has spiritual roots and rituals in Hinduism and Buddhism.  Mandala means both center and circumference in Indiana traditions.
  • Mandalas are used as an aid in meditation and yoga.  It is a circular design for people to create from within to center their mind and body.
  • Carl Jung, a Swiss Psychiatrist, used mandala in his sessions.  He defined it as “center, circumference, magic circle” He described it as a “natural urge to live out our potential, to fulfill the pattern of our whole personality.”
  • Carl Jung used a journal each morning, sketched circular designs and wrote about his dreams and thoughts.
  • Joan Kellogg-art therapist, stated a mandala helps to draw on the unconscious
  • Mandala originated in ancient rock carvings in Africa, Europe and North America.  It is found in other cultures and countries, as well as India, South Pacific etc.  It is found in flowers, moon, cathedrals, sacred places, religious rituals. 

Creating a mandala:

  • When creating a mandala we make a personal symbol that reveals who we are at that moment.  “drawing a circle may be something like drawing a protective line around the physical and psychological space that we each identify as ourself.” Joan Kellogg-Art Therapist
  • Invokes the self the underlying pattern of order and wholeness, we create our own sacred space, a place of protection, a focus for the concentration of out energies.
  • Mandala is best  performed in solitude, it brings self-discovery, personal growth and healing.
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books used as research for this art task

Tools needed for dot mandala

  • dot mandala tools-can order online
  • wooden dowels cut to size to use as a painting tool-various sizes
  • compass or pattern to trace for a circle shape
  • canvas board-any size
  • acrylic paint-variety of colors
  • brushes-to paint canvas with gesso and to paint background color if interested
  • tablecloth
  • palette
  • paper towels
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wooden dowel rods-find at craft stores and online

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large package of wooden dowel rods found online
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Acrylic Paint



Directions:

you may want to use gesso to protect the canvas prior to starting the dot mandala, if you do, it will need to dry over night.

Start by placing the circle tracer or compass on the canvas and draw a circle. Place the colors you want to use for the dot mandala onto a palette.

Start by taking any wooden dowel size and place your wooden dowel in paint covering the end point. Then place your dowel in the area you want to put the circle and lightly press the paint onto the canvas. The harder the pressure the more likely the paint will lift off. Light pressure is recommended. Switch to other sizes of the wooden dowels throughout the painting.

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Dot mandala painted by Caroline
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closer view of the Dot mandala painted by Caroline

Hope this inspires you to try a Dot Mandala Painting.

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Valley of Houses

Let’s be inspired, do not steal art. Let’s be creative together.

This is drawn with color pencils. Prismacolor and Crayola color pencils.

I might color more on the grass and sky. But for now I’m going to rest and look at it again later.

Caroline