Matisse said, “Drawing is like making an expressive gesture with the advantage of permanence.”
Art therapy is a way of connecting with our soulful depths, the unconscious mind. Yet each of us must find our own way to express our creative impulses – drawing, painting, ceramics, sculpting, woodworking, music, dancing, sewing, making murals, poetry, and writing. There are virtually infinite ways to express creativity. Our creativity offers us an important way of resolving our internal conflicts.
A conflict is when we have a clash of opposites. I am tired, but I have work to do. A conflict can be very disturbing, keeping me awake at night. I can worry about what to do. I may get very emotional. I am mad at my teacher or boss for assigning me so much work to do. It may seem impossible; I do not have enough time. I may cry or get very angry.
Carl Jung wrote, “To the extent that I managed to translate the emotions into images – that is to say, to find the images which were concealed in the emotion – I was inwardly calmed and reassured. . . . Had I left those images hidden in the emotions, I might have been torn to pieces by them. . . . As a result of my experiment I learned how helpful it can be from the therapeutic point of view to find the particular images which lie behind the emotions.”
In this video, Sue Renfrew, shows how to do art therapy for teens and adults to calm emotions and learn about oneself. Please gather your paper and crayons and join in the fun. You may prefer chalk, pencils, pens, pastels, or something else with which to draw. You may wish to draw on colored paper, cloth, paper bags, newspaper, or another surface on which to create a drawing. If possible, find a quiet space where you will not be interrupted and let’s create somethings new.