Creative Motivation: The Gifts of Online Community Participation

April 11, 2016

Creative Motivation: The Gifts of Online Community Participation | creativity in motion

As part of this year’s Spectrum (on its opening day May 2!), I am really excited and looking forward to chatting with Spectrum Organizer Hali Karla about the topic Creative Motivation: The Gifts of Online Community Participation. In our recorded video chat we’ll be exploring how to find your own rhythm and balance when using social media connections for inspiring & motivating your creativity.  As you may know, it is a topic I am super passionate about! I can’t wait to talk with Hali about it and have it included to kick off Spectrum 2016 as a bonus offering for this year’s participants- Yay!

How have you used social media connection to nurture or inspire your creativity?

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Social Media & Creative Motivation

Creative Motivation Quotes

Cultivating Creativity, Connection & Community | TEDx Ursuline College


My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365

April 5, 2016

It is now month four of my 2016 project: Illuminate 365.  Uploading all the photos and captures I’ve taken everyday over this first quarter was a wonderful (yet, a little overwhelming!) opportunity to reflect on the images, concepts, and messages they each convey.  This creative adventure has become a daily treasure hunt for illumination- revealed through rays of light, shadows of darkness, nature’s beauty, the morning sun, ordinary objects, warm candlelight, and many, many different places both outdoors and inside throughout this year’s winter season and now the fickle springtime that is upon us….

Many days honor inspiration such as, but not limited to: hope, grace, passion, courage, and creation…. other days provide a reminder or awakening of guidance, validation, and encouragement…. or a time embrace slowing down… while other days help me recognize that you cannot appreciate the light without the presence of darkness… each of the images below are all are sacred pieces and moments of this journey so far… (in no particular order):

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination: Illuminate 365 | creativity in motion

I’ve taken all these photos on my iPhone- experimenting a lot with app filters (LiveCollage, iLeaker, Instagram, LightEffects) which is quite fun.  Another treasure hunt that accompanies this project for me is discovering quotes and inspirations that connect with the image.

As the spring starts to completely bloom and begins to give way to summer, it will be nice to take notice of a refreshed landscape with a greener scenery outside and the impact of longer, warmer days ahead.:)


Travel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home!

March 27, 2016

6 Degrees of Creativity

Joy! The Random Acts of Art Adventure arrived back this month- wow! Thousands and thousands of miles logged around the world and many, many creative hands have contributed to this project since 2013- it been quite overwhelming to still take it’s artful presence all in- now here back in my hands- so grateful for everyone who was part of its long, inspiring journey…. Below are pics from its last few creative stops in Texas, North Carolina, and back here to Ohio:

Bethany in Texas:

Travel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of CreativityTravel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of Creativity

Carolyn in Texas— who also wrote this great post about her experience on her blog Creativity in Therapy:

Travel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of CreativityTravel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of CreativityTravel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of Creativity

Molly in North Carolina:

Travel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of Creativity

Misty in Ohio:

Travel Update: Random Acts of Art Adventure Arrives Home! | 6 Degrees of Creativity

My plan is to photograph the beautiful creative passports that traveled with the pouch and put a video together of its creative adventure and celebrate all the amazing participants who helped make this project happen throughout its 61 stop travel route.

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Make Paper, Make Peace

March 22, 2016

Earlier this month Drew Matott and I taught another Peace Paper papermaking, trauma intervention and social action course- this one for Counseling and Art Therapy graduate students at Ursuline College.  It was fun to teach together again over 2 days and introduce the 26 students we had to the therapeutic benefits of papermaking.

Make Paper, Make Peace | creativity in motionMake Paper, Make Peace | creativity in motion

Students were introduced to the work and travels of Peace Paper, its history and mission to collaborate with the art therapy community, and a variety of examples about how papermaking can be used with many different populations- especially in relationship to trauma, loss, & recovery, as well as bring awareness to issues related to mental health, sexual assault, and bullying.

Make Paper, Make Peace | creativity in motion

Students made lots of paper over the course of the workshop– probably at least 150 sheets (!) and experimented with pulp printing, double couching, and book binding.  Paper was first made using Peace Paper’s Hollander Beater from meaningful articles of clothing or a piece of fabric that students brought and wanted to transform into paper… as a new beginning or as an act of letting go of something.  Students also were introduced to DIY papermaking without the use of a Hollander, to explore adaptable options in the art therapy setting.

Make Paper, Make Peace | creativity in motion

What a great couple of days making paper with this group!

If you’re interested in Peace Paper’s trainings and workshops throughout the rest of 2016, check out the tour schedule here.  News about Peace Paper and resources for papermaking can be found here.

Make paper, make peace!

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Exploring Internet Based Platforms with Digital Art-based Approaches

February 26, 2016
Exploring Internet Based Platforms with Digital Art-based Approaches | creativity in motion

Polyvore collage – gm

It is with great enthusiasm that I share this co-authored paper : Online art therapy groups for young adults with cancer published this week via Arts & Health. It was a pleasure to help out with the original pilot for this project with the awesome team of art therapists Kate Collie, Mady Mooney & Sara Prins Hankinson to explore internet based platforms w/ digital and traditional art-based approaches:

Background: This study was the final phase of a participatory design (PD) project aimed at developing professionally led online art therapy groups for young adults with cancer.

Methods: We invited seven professionals with a range of relevant expertise to take part in a PD process that emphasized hands-on creative interaction. Each participant experienced one or more online art therapy sessions and provided feedback that we analyzed with qualitative thematic analysis.

Results: The analysis yielded six inter-related themes representing three types of experience (comfort, sense of connectedness and expression) and three types of therapeutic action that supported these experiences (facilitation, group support and dialog about the art).

Conclusions: The results assured us that our newly developed mode of psychosocial support was ready for online delivery to young adults with cancer. The results provided insight into therapeutic processes in online art therapy groups, especially with regard to collective meaning-making and sense of connection.

Collie, K., S. Prins Hankinson, M. Norton, C. Dunlop, M. Mooney, G. Miller and J. Giese-Davis (2016). “Online art therapy groups for young adults with cancer.” Arts & Health: 1-13.

In the project’s initial pilot, we met online over the course of many, many months through a closed chat room we accessed, as well as a private discussion board where we would post different art directives for our group to work on. During the course of this project each of us would rotate between facilitator, participant, and helped with evaluating the online tools and arts-based methods we were testing.

Some of the directives we participated in used traditional art media and art-making (mandalas, dollmaking to name a couple of my favorites!) either on our own or we created our own images at the same time together, then uploaded our art to our discussion board for further exploration as a group. Other directives we engaged in used online or digital art-based tools, such as Pencil Madness, ArtRage, Polyvore, artPad and more.  Often we would schedule a group chat where we could come together to process the directive and experience of exploring these programs and approaches using computer technology.  We also had fun with group video chats through Skype and Google Hangouts.

Exploring Internet Based Platforms with Digital Art-based Approaches | creativity in motion

starting a painting on artPad

From the experimentation we did and evaluated together, this work helped inspire and inform what would become an online art therapy group that Sara would led for young adults with cancer.

It’s been a pleasure and privilege to work with this tech savvy & creative team! It’s been great to have the opportunity to try out and learn different ways of making art and working together through technology. It’s also exciting to see how this groundwork can then be applied to facilitating online art therapy group work.

I hope you’ll learn more about the results of this project through checking out our paper.  Free access is still available for the first 50 downloads of the paper available here.  For those individuals who are members of the American Art Therapy Association, a benefit of your membership also includes complimentary access to Arts & Health, where you can also have free access to download the article. Log into AATA’s Members Only section to learn how to access Arts & Health!

Enjoy!

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Art Bridges

February 12, 2016

This month the Hildegard Center for the Arts published an inspiring, free resource of art-based ideas chock full of creative goodness called Art Bridges— Definitely a great collection (over 70 downloadable PDFs!)  for art therapists to use with their groups or individuals, as well as teachers or anyone interested in creative enrichment with youth!

Some of the ideas were contributed by members of the art therapy community- including myself- I was delighted to be invited to add a favorite gratitude art idea that I featured on this blog in 2012.  Since this post’s original publishing, I’ve used this idea with youth & women I’ve worked with in shelter- as a creative, affirming way to explore the concept of thankfulness in their own lives.  Often instead of making leaf shaped “blessing tags”, we would make different size and colored hearts to write on and hang from the mason jar’s branches.  It was a great community piece– the tree kept “growing” with new additions as more people add to it.  Others can also read the reflections previously shared.

The Art Bridges resource also suggests that therapists could also use the idea as a Courage or Healing Tree… a great idea that I may introduce into one of my groups!

Growing Abundance | creativity in motion

Thank you Hildegard Center for the Arts for putting this resource together and making it so accessible to us all!:)

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Create Fest: The 1st Annual Virtual Creativity Festival for Mental Health Professionals

February 8, 2016

Check this out! Create Fest — The 1st Annual Virtual Creativity Festival for Mental Health Professionals!

I am soooo excited to be a part of this offering!

Lisa Michell and Courtney Armstrong have brought together 12 influential therapists, and asked each to offer inspired approaches that will help you partner with your creativity to do your best work and elicit deep transformation within your clients (and yourself).

CreateFest | creativity in motionDiscover new, creative ideas and earn 12 CEU’s from the comfort of your own home or office and… each speaker will lead an inspiring activity you can do during the festival to experience these transformational strategies yourself!

I am speaking about topics related to self-care, trauma focused work, and creativity’s role in supporting mental health professionals. It was a pleasure to speak with Lisa about these topics–  It’s an honor to be included in the debut of this event with such an inspiring line up with so much to offer…

If it seems like this offering would fit related to your work, I hope you’ll join us later this month! :)

Learn all about the offerings and speakers for this event here!


Cultivating Creativity, Connection & Community | TEDx Ursuline College

January 25, 2016

I’m super excited to share my TEDx Ursuline College talk that went live last week!

It was an amazing opportunity to share my love of social media, creativity, and community building…. It was a great experience to talk about the possibilities social networking offers to connect all these passions together!

I’ve been able to creatively connect with soooo many through social networking– the art-based collaborations & gathering together that can happen online is always so inspiring!

Cultivating Creativity, Connection, & Community- TEDx Ursuline College | creativity in motion

TEDx Rehearsal

 

Cultivating Creativity, Connection, & Community- TEDx Ursuline College | creativity in motion

TEDx Ursuline College

 

TEDx Ursuline College

TEDx Ursuline College

How do you use social media to cultivate creativity, connection, and community?

Check out all the TEDx Ursuline College talks here.

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Spectrum 2016 Give-Away Blog Hop!

January 20, 2016

I have some exciting news to share today: I am going to be a returning contributor in Spectrum 2016 this year – and I have 1 spot to give-away here at my blog as part of Spectrum’s Give-Away Blog-Hop!

Spectrum Blog Hop Giveaway!

If you’ll remember from last year, Spectrum is an online Holistic-Creative workshop– now going on its third year, and organized by Hali Karla of Hali Karla Arts. Spectrum 2016 will be guided by 20 NEW featured teachers and more than 20 returning contributors offering a variety of workshops, inspiration and invitations – all intended to empower, nurture and celebrate your innate creative expression, healing journey, and personal development!

There will be weekly inspiration & reflective activities related to mixed-media art-making and journaling, guidance on integrating your creative process and holistic awareness into your day-to-day life, and a variety of opportunities to connect, support and share with others in the growing Holistic-Creative online community.

The themes that will loosely guide our 2016 Spectrum experience are Forgiveness, Shifting Perspective, Navigating Uncertainty, Integration, Alchemy, Connecting with Nature, Honoring Body, Trusting Joy, and Expressing One’s Truth! You can expect a variety of perspectives on these – and so much more.

To learn more about the details, including all of the contributors and workshop offerings for this course GO RIGHT HERE.

Spectrum 2016 Contributors

As a returning contributor of this year’s Spectrum, I am looking forward to participating in an exclusive interview with Hali around a topic I am super passionate about: Creative Motivation: The Gifts of Online Community Participation that will be offered as a bonus during the first month of Spectrum!

Pre-registration for Spectrum 2016 officially opens on February 1, 2016 (and the program will begin on May 2). So be sure to bookmark this blog post so that you can check back to see if you win the giveaway here or sign up just as soon as it goes on sale.

About the Give-Away:

  • I have one spot for Spectrum 2016 to give-away to a lucky winner in our January blog-hop – but if you follow the awesome blog-hop list below, you will have an even better chance of winning a spot by entering the other giveaways as well. All of the new teachers are playing along – and quite a few of the returning contributors volunteered to join in the fun, too – so there are over 30 chances to win a free pass!

Here is how to enter my give-away:

  • It’s simple! Leave me a creative hello below in the comments section between now and January 30, 2016. I’ll randomly pull a name from this group and will announce the winner of my free Spectrum pass via this post on February 1, 2016 – the same day pre-registration opens for Spectrum 2016!

Just below is a list of the other amazing, inspiring teachers who are playing along in the Spectrum 2016 blog-hop, with the dates their giveway goes live – be sure to visit their site and enter there, as well- all giveaways are open until the end of the month:

13 January:
Hali Karla http://www.halikarla.com/blog

14 January:
Andrea Schroeder http://www.creativedreamincubator.com/blog
Angelique Arroyo
http://schoolformedicinewomyn.com

15 January:
Bebe Butler http://www.bebebutler.com
Beth Morey http://www.sheofthewild.com

16 January:
Briana Goetzen http://www.orangespiralarts.com
Carissa Paige http://carissapaige.blogspot.com

17 January:
Cat Caracelo http://catcaracelo.com
Catherine Anderson http://catherineandersonstudio.blogspot.com

18 January:
Chris Zydel http://creativejuicesarts.com
Effy Wild http://effybird.com

19 January:
Elloa Atkinson http://www.elloaatkinson.com
Grace Howes    http://www.redbarn-studios.com

20 January:   
Kara LC Jones http://motherhenna.blogspot.com

21 January:
Kelly Johnson http://www.wingswormsandwonder.com
Kitty Oppegard http://handoverheartstudios.blogspot.com

22 January:
Kristal Norton http://kristalnorton.com
Lisa Hofmann http://dandelionseedsanddreams.blogspot.com

23 January:
Lisa Wilson http://www.beingbreath.com
Lucy Pearce http://dreamingaloud.net

24 January:
Malini Parker http://www.maliniparker.com
Meghan Genge http://www.meghangenge.com

25 January:
Melissa Harris http://www.melissaharris.com
Michelle Turbide http://michelleturbidestudios.com

26 January:
Petrea Hansen-Adamidis http://www.arttherapist.ca/blog
Rachael Rice http://rachaelrice.com

27 January:
Robin Hallett http://www.robinhallett.com
Shelley Klammer http://www.expressiveartworkshops.com

28 January:
Suki Ciappara Ka’Pinao http://sukihealingarts.com
Tara Leaver http://taraleaver.com

Enjoy the blog-hop, good luck on the give-aways, and I hope to see you in Spectrum in a few months!


New Gifts & Lessons Inspired by My Beautiful, Altered Brain

January 13, 2016

When I was a senior in college (1994), I joined the American Art Therapy Association. As a member, one of my favorite benefits was receiving Art Therapy: The Journal of The American Art Therapy Association. As a young student getting to know this profession, reading the literature inside was always inspiring. I also really enjoyed seeing what art graced the cover. Often the very first thing I would do was open the issue and look for the masthead about the art and what art therapist created it.

So a few months ago, it was a huge surprise and honor to have the opportunity to contribute my own art for the last issue of 2015 (Volume 32, Number 4). In particular, an image from 2012 My Beautiful, Altered Brain series, which is super dear to my heart.

This week, I was able to see and hold this issue in actual print while mine is still in route- a copy I received from the current President of the Buckeye Art Therapy Association (thanks Molly!).

Wow! A very surreal moment on lots of different levels!

Volume 32, Number 4 (2015) | Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association

Volume 32, Number 4 (2015) | Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association

Artist Statement: My Own Beautiful, but Altered Brain (2012) | A few years ago I came across the art and story of Elizabeth Jameson and was so very moved by her work, research, and interpretation of taking her own medical imaging and brain scans as a personal expression and inquiry to understanding and coping with her diagnosis with multiple sclerosis, as well as help others with the disease and educate the medical community through her art. Jameson put a call out for people living with brain inflicted illnesses to “feel how ugly it is and how beautiful it is”, and this invitation, in addition to personal communication with Elizabeth inspired me to explore my own experience with the same disease. In 2012 I started to use my own MRI films & brain imaging collected over the last 13 years to create digital art, mixed media, and altered book art as a way to process, manage, and share this health related journey.

*****

I have been working on some new digital art, after having another MRI done this summer of my brain and spinal cord. While standing barefoot in my thin medical gown after my testing was over, I enthusiastically explained how I make art with my imaging, its purpose, showed some examples on my phone, and inquired about how to get these new images. The radiology staff was super helpful and eager to supply me with a CD on the way out of my appointment!

I was excited to start working on some new images and taking control of my illness again through this form of art making. So empowering and affirming to do in response to such an unpredictable and frustrating disease. I first converted my MRI imaging into JPGs.  Then I did some digital painting using ArtRage and photo editing with PicMonkey:

New Gifts & Lessons Inspired by My Beautiful, Altered Brain | creativity in motion

 

New Gifts & Lessons Inspired by My Beautiful, Altered Brain | creativity in motion

 

New Gifts & Lessons Inspired by My Beautiful, Altered Brain | creativity in motion

New Gifts & Lessons Inspired by My Beautiful, Altered Brain | creativity in motion

My experiences with this chronic illness in the last couple of years has taught me new lessons & gifts around patience, vulnerability, openness, and to respect/listen to my body’s voice. I’m also so thankful for the kind support I’ve received in response to this series and the loving presence and understanding that surrounds me everyday. :)


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