Probably never thought of that, right?
Well, now you’re going to.
(This post is continued from last week).
Working over 15 years in rehabs I have come to believe that ART may be more powerful than words.
Some art examples below are from students/clients/patients at Remuda Ranch in Wickenburg, Arizona where I taught EXPRESSIVE ART for almost 10 years.
The rest of the art pieces are from other rehabs in Wisconsin & Alabama where I worked, and some examples are from my home studio where I have a Saturday morning art class for “special needs” students… (which is all of us, right?).
These students have all signed release forms for me to show their art without their names, (Except. for Shelley, of course).
Please remember that I am NOT an Art Therapist, I am an art teacher that specializes in creating art lessons that help students DISCOVER MORE about themselves.
I have had the privilege of learning in some of the best rehabilitation centers in America.
(See my Bio) and I feel this is my mission in life, to help people understand themselves better through… the POWER OF ART. (See chapter 8, page 46, in Forgetting to Fly, for the story when I first realized the importance of expressing yourself visually).
Having said all that…
Here are examples of student art work that changed their perspective.
Directive is “If your negative thoughts had a face, what would it look like?”
After visualizing and making the face I have my students write, inside the mask, what the voice in their head is saying.
2.) FINGER PAINT FEELINGS:
Directive is to “Paint all the feelings you have a hard time separating”.
When the feeling was too overwhelming, I would have the student frame a small part so they could separate individual colors and feelings.
3.) MISC ART PROJECTS:
Directive is to create a piece of art, from any medium, to explain your life.
Now, here are some extraordinary art pieces, simple and detailed.
Now you see why I said “NO WORDS NECESSARY”.
Whether the student feels they are an artist, or not, the art never fails.
The last part of every art class is to share what they made and why.
This is where the magic comes in. The student may not want to talk about themselves, but they don’t have a problem explaining their art… and BINGO !!!
They see and hear themselves speaking their TRUTH. It all comes to the surface.
The process is truly amazing.
My final example of Expressive Art is a piece is from a dad who felt overwhelmed that he couldn’t help his daughter, who had been in a rehab for 3 months.
His art, by the way, is the cover picture to my book, “Stories Behind the ART”.
To read more enchanting, desperate, affirming, sad, hopeful, angry, enlightened stories go to:
http://artwithapurposebooks.com and check out all my books on the Power of ART.