BAAT & HCPC Registered Art Psychotherapist
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Every professional displayed on Counselling Directory has been independently verified by our team to ensure they have suitable credentials to practise.
My name is Michael Cousin, and I am a qualified Art Psychotherapist living in Cardiff.
Words fail us all sometimes, it can be hard to know where to begin or how to make sense of our experiences. Art can be another way to communicate or express ourselves.
The act of creation is about transformation. You take any material and rearrange its form to create a new one. Art Psychotherapy is an approach that uses acts of creation to transform you. It can be a powerful act of healing.
Being creative can mean many things in these sessions; it can include the use of traditional art materials to draw, paint or sculpt, through writing and poetry or music. But it can also mean being creative through play, being creative with words, ideas, memories, and dreams. Some clients are understandably nervous about this, maybe thinking that they must be ‘good at drawing’ for instance, but this isn’t the case. It can also be as simple as the act of talking.
The creative process can help release long held feelings or allow you to see a new way to be, it can help distract you and calm you, energise you or give you new ideas.
I won’t direct you by saying what I think you should use or do; I can help guide you to rediscover what you already possess within yourself. I do this by asking questions and making observations. I will try to see all that you are, not just the reason you have come to see me, there is always more to you than that reason. My role as a therapist is to hear and see you as you are now, then to guide you and support you in the discovery of who you might want to be.
My experience is broad, and I am happy to work with clients at any stage of life. An art psychotherapists’ training is extensive and intensive over a three-year period, and it provides us with a framework that can be used to support a client with any mental health struggle up to the most complex issues. At this point in my career the focus of my practice has tended towards working with those who have experienced multiple traumatic events or have diagnosed disorders. I work with clients who have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Schizoaffective Disorder and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). I also have wide ranging experience of clients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD).
I am registered and licensed by the Health and Care Professions Council to legally practice under the title Art Psychotherapist. I am a registered member of the British Association of Art Therapists and adhere to their guidelines and ethics. I also have an enhanced DBS check and specialist professional liability insurance.
Prior to my training I was a contemporary artist and curator with over 20 years of experience of national and international exhibitions. I have both a BA (Hons) and Master’s Degree in Fine Art and a Master’s Degree in Art Psychotherapy (2016).
I have completed a CPCAB Endorsed Sandtray Therapy Foundation Course (2021), Solution Focused CBT course at the Anna Freud Centre (2019), Dyadic Parent – Child Art Psychotherapy Training Level 1 by BAAT (2018).
Before setting up my thriving private practice I was employed as a therapist by the charity New Pathways to work with children, young people and adults who have experienced sexual violence. I currently work sessionally with Chepstow Counselling Services, Compass Community fostering services and ACT Training and am employed as a Primary School Therapist with Torfaen Council through the Cwmbran Centre for Young People. In the past I trained as a Listening Volunteer with the Samaritans and had a placement with Bethel Community Church in Newport working with refugees.
I am one of the therapists registered with the MA Art Psychotherapy course to offer sessions to new and current students throughout their three-year tenure.
Training, qualifications & experience
- 2013 – 2021 Full Member of the British Association of Art Therapists, London.
- 2016 – 2021 Enhanced DBS.
- 2016 – 2021 Registered with the Health & Care Professions Council, London.
Awards and Funding
- 2012 Creative Wales Ambassadors Award Winner, Arts Council of Wales.
- 2007 Major Creative Wales Award Winner, Arts Council of Wales.
- 2019 Solution Focused CBT. Two-day training course by Dr. Biba Rebolj / Ribalon Institute.
- 2019 Trauma Focussed CBT for Children & Young People with PTSD. Two-day training course with David Trickey at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families.
- 2018 Dyadic Parent-Child Art Psychotherapy Training Level 1 by BAAT.
- 2018 Childhood Sexual Exploitation & Sexual Exploitation Risk Assessment Framework training by New Pathways.
- 2017 ASIST training (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) by New Pathways.
- 2015 10-week training programme with New Pathways in rape and sexual abuse counselling.
- 2013 – 2016 University of South Wales, Caerleon. Art Psychotherapy, Masters Degree (Merit)
- 1996 – 1998 University of Wales Institute, Cardiff. Fine Art, Masters Degree.
- 1993 – 1996 Southampton Institute of Art and Technology. Fine Art, BA (Hons), First Class.
2015 – 2016 Art Psychotherapist, New Pathways, Newport and Merthyr Tydfil. Placement as part of MA Art Psychotherapy course with the award-winning organisation specialising in rape and sexual abuse counselling. Attached to the children's unit working with clients aged 3 – 19. Current Enhanced DBS Certificate.
2014 – 2015 Art Psychotherapist, Newport Community Counselling Service (NCCS). Placement as part of MA Art Psychotherapy course working with asylum seekers and refugees suffering from PTSD in Newport City Centre.
2002 – 2003 Listening Volunteer, fully trained for listening duties with Samaritans in Cardiff.
2019 - 2020 Primary School Therapist with Torfaen Young People's Counselling Service.
2018 – 2020 Self-employed Art Psychotherapist in private practice.
2017 - 2019 Private Counsellor for Associated Community Training (ACT)
2016 – 2019 Art Psychotherapist for New Pathways, Newport. Working with children, young people and adults who have experienced sexual violence.
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 (HCPC)
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
From £40.00 to £60.00
Free initial telephone or online session
Concessions offered for
I believe that the therapy should be available to as many people as possible so my fees will be reflected by a client’s ability to pay. I always offer a no obligation free consultation by telephone or via Zoom where we can discuss your needs.
Currently I am only offering sessions online.
My usual fee for waged clients is £60 for face-to-face sessions though I am not currently offering in person sessions. Online sessions are £50 with a further reduction for those on a low or reduced income. Sessions last one hour and would typically be at the same time and day each week. There is no obligation to commit to several sessions and dependent on your needs and my availability I am happy to discuss less frequent sessions if appropriate.
There is a lower rate of £40 for those training to be Art Psychotherapists and I have over five years of full-time experience as a therapist in accordance with current guidelines.
To book a consultation or a session please send an email to email@example.com or call my mobile on +447852133772
I operate a 24-hour cancellation policy.
When I work
I have a flexible schedule so please get in touch to see if I can offer you sessions to suit your availability.