Bridget Salter - Art Psychotherapist
I am a fully qualified and accredited art psychotherapist and specialise in offering art therapy to children and young people and supporting their parents and carers. My experience includes work across the age range, from 4 – 24-year-olds in a variety of settings.
Children and young people can sometimes become overwhelmed and worried about their lives or aspects of it, and need support that is separate from family and friends. They might seek help themselves, or parents/carers might see their need and respond.
Art therapy is an accessible, recognised and regulated therapeutic approach which young people often readily engage with. They can find it easier to explore thoughts and feelings through creative means rather than just with words, particularly when they feel confused and unsure, and it is often a mix of image and words that can provide a bridge to feeling understood.
My practice is led by the young person and their needs. We might use different mediums depending on age and inclination, such as creative play or storytelling, as well as art making. Sometimes talking is enough, sometimes silence is better. Perhaps playing games together enables a connection to be made while we talk. In each case, I respond to the individual and what they bring.
Things we might think about might include relationships, anxiety, self-esteem, feeling low, identity, loss, managing emotions, change, trauma. And just being you.
Often behaviour is the outward sign of distress and my focus will be on the underlying issues that might lie beneath. Art therapy can be really helpful to explore unconscious processes in a gentle and supportive way, especially when these feel confusing to both the young person and family.
I offer a space where the young person can feel safe to explore the difficulties that might be on their mind. I go at their pace, giving them time to make sense of their life experiences and thoughts. Sometimes things are resolved in a few weeks, sometimes it takes longer. Regular reviews with parents will help determine this.
I work individually, or with parent and child (dyadic), or sometimes a mix of the two. We can decide what might work best in the initial assessment sessions.
Art psychotherapy, or art therapy, is a form of psychotherapy that uses image making, art forming and creative expression as the primary means of communication and exploration. It allows a conversation to develop between the client, the artwork and the art therapist that gives space for understanding, reflection and healing.
It is not a recreational activity nor an art lesson; you do not have to be good at art or have experience doing it. The focus is on the process and not on the final form; there is no judgment or critique. I often refer to it as improvisation.
Art psychotherapy allows feelings and thoughts to emerge, to be seen and thought about. It can help untangle and make sense of life experiences and troubles, the therapist there to guide and support, giving space wherever it is needed.
MA Art Psychotherapy / HCPC / BAAT
Training, qualifications & experience
I qualified as an Art Psychotherapist in 2017, and have extensive experience of working with children and young people, and their families, in CAMHS (Children & Adolescent Mental Health Services in the NHS), charity organisations, in schools and in a private setting. My private practice runs alongside these other commitments.
An Art Therapist (or Art Psychotherapist, both titles are interchangeable) is someone who has undertaken training in art therapy approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). In the UK Art Therapists are statutorily regulated by the HCPC and must be on this register to practice legally.
I am registered with the HCPC and a member of the British Association of Art Therapists (www.BAAT.org), and I abide by these organisations' codes of professional and ethical conduct. I hold a current Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate and am fully insured.
I have regular supervision and am committed to continuing professional development, pursuing my interest in a psychotherapeutic approach to children’s and young people’s mental health.
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
£40.00 per session
After an initial brief conversation on the phone, I offer a period of assessment of 3 - 5 sessions which allows for both the young person and myself to work out if therapy and my approach is a good fit. This may be enough, or we may decide a different approach is more suitable at this point. There is no obligation to continue. If we agree to proceed with therapy, individual or child & parent sessions are offered to an agreed timescale, with regular reviews included.
All sessions are £40 and last for 50 mins each.
Payment is made on the day by BACS; cancellations within 24hrs are charged the full rate.
Sessions are normally held weekly.
At present I run my private practice on Fridays only, and currently have availability on Friday mornings. I practice from dedicated clinic rooms in central Weston-Super-Mare that provide a calm and friendly space.
Sessions are held face to face, with safety protocols in place to prevent risk of Covid 19 transmission.
I look forward to hearing from you.