Color Art Therapy

Color Art Therapy

The use of color through art therapy is therapeutic; art therapy is a powerful tool of self-discovery and empowerment. Art therapy supports the client in expressing their innermost thoughts and feelings from their subconscious via pictures and color psychology. It is particularly useful when clients are unable to express themselves verbally or are not aware of the problem at hand. Using the combination of art therapy with color psychology expertise is an effective way of encouraging children and adults to express their innermost thoughts and feelings without the need for words.
Art making and interacting when creating helps people to tell their stories and to express themselves, especially when it may be difficult to express themselves verbally. In a safe environment with directional guided art therapy using color psychology skills and expertise, people can find their voice.  We now know image language comes before verbal language, therefore the importance of color psychology, creativity, and art therapy for health, well-being, and self-development should not be underestimated.

This can be particularly effective when people are unable to talk or verbalize how they are feeling due to past hurts or painful experiences.

Using art therapy by putting color to paper using pastels, pencil or paints is therapeutic and allows freedom of expression and an opening of the subconscious mind. Art therapy is the process of putting color to paper that is important and not the outcome. Art Therapy is a combination of art, color psychology with a smattering of color psychotherapy and can be enjoyed by everyone. In the hands of a professional the final art therapy assessment is revealing and informative with guidelines on how to go forward using color psychology methods and exercises to support the art therapy session.

As part of a course of treatments, art therapy may be introduced, a fully qualified Color Psychology practitioner may ask their client to paint a particular scene or color freehand. Using art therapy expertise the Color Psychologist can interpret the complete picture by first looking at the colors chosen by the client, where they are placed and the images they have drawn. The placement of content, the depth of the colors used, and variation each tell their story.  Color psychology is an integral part of the work, process, and guides the outcome of the art therapy session.


Benefits of Color Art Therapy

You don’t need to be a talented artist to engage in art therapy or to enjoy its benefits. The goal is not to create a masterpiece but to express yourself freely through art. The artistic results are secondary to the emotional benefits.

Art therapy can help people who have been exposed to loss or trauma. It can support people in overcoming addiction and mental health disorders. It has even been used in hospital settings for cancer patients. It’s also a common expressive therapy for children. The great thing about art therapy is that it can help the lives of so many people – even if you do not have a major concern or illness. Art therapy is beneficial to anyone who experiences the stress of everyday modern life.

Have you ever noticed how expressive art therapy is calming and peaceful? Have you ever come home from a long workday in front of the computer and needed an outlet that wasn’t a screen? Engaging in art techniques can clear the mind, let us put feelings and thoughts onto paper or canvas, and leave us feeling accomplished and calm. It’s a great option for people who experience any sort of stress or upset in their lives, however big or small.

Your brain on art.

When we engage in the creation of our own art forms, we receive big benefits to our minds, both physically and mentally. When we produce art with our own hands, there is increased neural connectivity in the area of the brain that deals with introspection, memory, and self-monitoring. This means that this area is more active when engaged in producing art. Mentally, we become more psychologically resilient, we have increased positive perspectives, and become more self-aware. This helps us to cope with future problems, stressors, or events. It is said that the pairing of actually creating the art (motor processing) and thinking about expression (cognitive processing) is what makes art therapy so beneficial.

Types of art therapy for different feelings and emotions.

To do art therapy, you can either take a non-directed or directed approach. A non-directed approach is flexible, and less structured than a directed approach. For example, you would draw, paint, color, or sculpt without guidelines. A directed approach is more structured in the sense that you choose an art therapy activity that relates to certain feelings and emotions. With either approach, your feelings are expressed, and your stress levels decrease. The benefits of art therapy are provided in both approaches. Here are some examples of art therapy activities related to feelings and emotions that you can try:

  • Paint or draw your emotions. Here, you want to think about how you are feeling and put that feeling into paper, however you see it.

  • Create an emotion wheel. You’ll want to use lots of colors for this activity! Label each emotion with a color that fits for you.

  • Design a postcard that you will never send. This activity helps with releasing anger in a way that never has to be presented to someone else.

  • Coloring books for emotions. You can buy, or print, certain coloring pages that were created to release emotions.

  • Make a collage related to a quote that speaks to you. Turn words that mean a lot to you and turn it into a visual that is inspiring.

  • Draw a wild invention. This activity will get your creative juices flowing and will most likely be wild and funny!

  • Draw animals you love. For some people, animals are a source of love and happiness. Draw the ones that you love the most (your pet included).

  • Draw, color, or paint your idea of the perfect day or perfect home. This activity will help you create a visual of spaces and things that feel safe and warm to you.

  • Paint or color while listening to music. When art and music are paired together, our brains and bodies can relax.

  • Make a mandala. You can either print one-off or draw your own – this is a meditative symbol that is relaxing to look at and work with.

  • Draw something very big! Get out the large pieces of paper or a big cardboard box and get your body moving.

  • Choose colors that are relaxing and calming to you and only use those. Sometimes certain colors elicit different feelings for us. Choose ones that speak to you.

  • Draw, paint, or sculpt outdoors. The sights, sounds, and atmosphere of the outdoors, when paired with art, are very relaxing.

Trauma and Loss.
  • Create a collage of your worries. Put whatever worries you in your life on paper.

  • Turn illness into a masterpiece. If you or someone close to you is ill, turn those feelings into something meaningful.

  • Paint someone you have lost. If you have lost someone close to you, remember him or her and make that special person close to you again.

  • Draw a safe space. You can refer to your safe space when you need a reminder.

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