In Art Therapy the individual does not make an art object for visually appealing aesthetics instead the individual is encouraged to engage with the art making process in order to express the self. The extent of self-expression through the process of art making enables the individual to communicate their inner thoughts and feelings in a manner which is not restricted by the individual’s vocabulary.
The individual cannot excuse themselves from the art making process by stating that they are not creative as the individual is encouraged to engage with the art making experience solely to express the self and it really does not matter what the final art object looks like.
The Art Therapist will steer away from any form of artistic direction and instead chooses to encourage the individual to enter into an art making process that is playful, spontaneous and most of all enjoyable.
The individuals are encouraged to engage with their process of playful and spontaneous art making in order to generate a level of self-expression. The individuals involved with this process of expressive art making are able to safely explore and rediscover their own personal sense of playfulness and spontaneity in the security of the Art therapy environment and adapt these elements into their life.
Once the art making process has come to an end the Art Therapist will encourage the individual to enter into a dialogue around their own art object. This dialogue often reflects how the art making process felt, any meaning attributed to the art object and what the art object may be reflecting back to the individual. This discussion process within Art therapy enables the individual to differentiate between their own needs and desires and the needs and desires of the other group members.
Through recognising the differences and similarities between themselves and the other group members the individual is supported towards becoming aware of their own sense of self-worth and identity and calls for the individual to take ownership over and responsibility to their own self-care and life.