“It is in connection to our body, and in relationship with other people that healing is possible”.*
Group Art Therapy
I can facilitate both open and closed style art therapy groups.
Open groups may be the ideal way for you to come and experience how art therapy may be beneficial for you. Closed groups ask for more commitment from participants, however, they are designed to provide you with a deeper and richer experience of self-discovery and healing. I have provided a brief description of each to give you an idea and help you decide what might suit you.
Group sessions will be advertised on this website and in the relevant community groups where they are to be held. Feel free to contact me if you or your organisation are interested in group sessions.
How can group art therapy be beneficial?
For some people, engaging in art therapy within a group setting may have the following benefits in addition to the other benefits of art therapy described in the 'about' section:
A sense of shared experience – feeling less alone or isolated knowing that others share the same problems, fears and anxieties.
Contribution - giving and sharing of experiences, insights and information.
Connectedness, mutual support and finding a safe place to share.
Feeling heard, supported and building trust with others.
Increased confidence in communicating with others.
Interpersonal learning – an opportunity to build relationships and to examine and re-work old patterns.
Gain a sense of hope.
These run as blocks of 5 - 8 weekly sessions, generally 2 hours in length. Numbers are limited to around 6 - 8 members per group. The groups explorations are based around themes that dive into various aspects of the human experience. The groups are structured with a brief warm-up activity, opening discussion, an introduction of the theme, then time for art making, followed by a time of reflection and sharing for those who wish to do so. I always provide different options for activities as allowing choices and being respectful of your needs is something I consider an essential part of my approach.
Open and single session groups
These follow a similar structure to the closed groups but the themes and activities are tailored to suit what is given within the limits of safe self-discovery within the open nature of the group. They generally focus on strengths, self-nurturing and discovering inner resources. These sessions do not require ongoing commitment.
* Laurence Heller, A. Lapierre, Healing Developmental Trauma
Image: Nature Mandalas created in a group therapy session.