Art therapy is a way for clients to use art media, the creative system, and the resulting artwork to examine their feelings, resolve emotional dilemmas, encourage self-awareness, guide behavior and addictions, strengthen social skills, increase self-esteem, improve reality orientation, and reduce anxiety. A goal in art therapy is to improve or restore a client’s functioning and his or her sense of personal well being. Art therapy practice requires knowledge of visual art (drawing, painting, sculpture, and other art forms) and the creative process, as well as of human development, psychological, and counseling theories and techniques.
The creative therapies can be very helpful in the process of recovery from addiction. They can provide time to get in touch with the inner self and with the higher power and can provide a form of expression for feelings that cannot be easily identified or put into words. Through helping the addict connect with his/her more authentic self, the expressive arts can help raise self-esteem and provide an opportunity to create new experiences beyond habitual and painful emotional patterns. The creative arts foster a renewed ability to relax without drugs or alcohol. We utilize the transpersonal and the sheerly artistic forms of self expression through Soul Collage, Creating a New Story through art journals, Making Sand trays, Experiential Mask Making, Sculpting the Stuck Places, Wounded Maps, Poetry Salons, and Painting the Inner Voice.