- I am a qualified and professionally registered Art Psychotherapist.
I have full professional indemnity insurance, full BAAT membership and have been checked by the DBS.
What is art psychotherapy?
Art therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of communication. A Registered Art Therapist, or Art Psychotherapist, is someone who has undertaken an approved training in Art Psychotherapy at post-graduate, MA or MSc level, and who is a member of the British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT) and registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). Art Therapists work with children, young people, adults and the elderly.
The overall aim of art therapy is to effect change and growth on a personal level through the use of art materials in a safe, confidential and facilitating environment.
Art therapy is not dependent on spoken language and can therefore be helpful to anyone who finds it difficult to express their thoughts and feelings verbally. Art therapy is a three way process that focuses on the use of art materials and the relationship between the therapist and the client.
Clients who can use art therapy may have a wide range of difficulties, disabilities or diagnoses. These include, for example emotional, behavioural or mental health problems, PTSD, relationship issues, difficult experiences such as historical abuse or bereavement, life-limiting conditions and physical illness.
Art therapy may be provided for groups, or for individuals, depending on clients’ needs. It is not a recreational activity or an art lesson, although the sessions can be enjoyable. Clients do not need to have any previous experience or expertise in art so please don't be put off by the word 'art'. There is no pressure to use the art materials, sometimes just talking is enough.
Why use art?
Art has long been known to have therapeutic properties. When creating visual images, people ‘draw’ on the right side of their brains – the same side that is used before language develops. It is where visual memories are stored.
Using art materials to make images which can be thought about with a qualified and registered art therapist may help relieve difficult or painful feelings and can help increase general wellbeing. Sometimes words can’t be found to describe thoughts and feelings but the process involved in image making and the images themselves can help to do so.
What is needed?
- A self-contained room, consistently available and free from interruption to ensure privacy and confidentiality
- A sink with running water
- Table and chairs
- Lockable storage space
‘The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommends arts therapies in their guidelines on schizophrenia, quoting evidence that arts therapies are the only form of treatment found to be effective for the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, and recommending that they should be considered for everyone with this diagnosis, at all stages of the condition, including the acute stage, and to promote recovery’
Comments people have made about their experience of art therapy:
“It’s had a profound impact. I consider this to be the most successful thing that has happened to me in my mental health history. I’ve taken away what I did there and use it”
“I don’t feel a prisoner of my depression any more. I can’t tell you how much that means. I’d rather die than go through another dark time like the last one. But this has given me a new way of being and shown me a different way of coping with being me”
“I’ve had profound and lasting benefits from this work”
“There have been enormous changes in how I cope now… I don’t think realistically I could have hoped for much more from it”
“I really feel that it has given me more tools to deal with the things I need to deal with”
These views about the experience of art therapy are from clients at The Creative Therapies Service, Exeter, who were interviewed by Sarah Bennet for ‘Words are not enough’, MSc Research, University of Exeter School of Psychology, December 2001.
Training, qualifications & experience
I have a Masters degree in Art Psychotherapy Practice offered by Leeds Beckett University in conjunction with Sheffield NHS Trust. I have HCPC registration and full membership of the British Association of Art Therapists (BAAT).
(I have full professional indemnity insurance and have been checked by the DBS).
I have a Masters degree (with Merit) in Art, Cultures and Contexts/Contemporary Art Theory.
I have a PGCE (for HE) and a BA (Hons) in Fine Art Illustration.
My experience covers a range of professional roles and settings which include the following:
Specialist Mental Health Practitioner within the NHS Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
Trained Affair Recovery Group Leader facilitating Online support programmes for couples who find themselves in crisis due to infidelity. These groups are comprised of married couples that are attempting to save their marriage and work through the wounds created by infidelity. EMS Online groups provide a combination of support and education. These groups meet once a week via telephone conference call for an hour and a half for a total of 13 weeks. The calls are facilitated by a trained Affair Recovery Leader. I also facilitate weekly group calls for the betrayed spouse whose marriage has broken down due to infidelity.
Registered / Accredited
Being registered/accredited with a professional body means an individual must have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by their member organisation.
Health and Care Professions Council
The HCPC are an independent, UK-wide health regulator. They set standards of professional training, performance and conduct for 16 professions.
They keep a register of health professionals who meet their standards, and they take action if registered health professionals fall below those standards. They were created by a piece of legislation called the Health Professions Order 2001.
Registration means that a health professional meets national standards for their professional training, performance and conduct.
Areas of counselling I deal with
Avg Cost (per hourly session): £50 - £70 Sliding Scale: Yes
Initial consultation one hour: free
(24 hour cancellation notice is required where possible).
No charge for initial phone enquiries.
I have full professional indemnity insurance and can be contracted for sessional work at certain establishments at a reduced rate. Weekly block booking by a school, care home or other organisation: £50 - £60 per one-to-one session, or day rate negotiable.
Please do not hesitate to contact me via phone or email with any questions you may have. If I am unable to answer please do leave me a message, ideally with the best times to contact you, and I will call/message you back.