Creativity & The Arts in Healing

January 15, 2017

The UCLArts & Healing Conference in partnership with the Expressive Therapies Summit presents Creativity & The Arts in Healing to be offered this spring March 30 through April 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California at the Hilton Los Angeles Airport. This 4 day conference is an opportunity to learn arts-based tools for facilitating communication, building connection, promoting positive emotions, fostering engagement, reducing stress, and managing the impact of trauma.  Offerings include 125+ workshops delivered by leading national experts in art, dance, drama, drumming, music, and writing integrated with mental health practices. Select any one or combination of days. Over 30 continuing education credits are available.

Creativity & Arts in Healing | creativty in motion

Specialty tracks include:

  • Mindfulness & Wellbeing
  • Children & Adolescents
  • Community Building & Social Justice
  • Expressive Writing & Journaling
  • Play Therapy
  • Special Populations

Creative expression invites self-reflection and dialogue that can lead to meaningful self-discovery, connection with others, and personal empowerment. Studies have shown that the arts—particularly when integrated with mental health practices—can yield social, emotional, physical and cognitive benefits. The nonverbal aspect of the arts transcends traditional barriers of age, ability, and culture. Shared creative experiences build empathy and community, which expand possibilities for action and transformation.

Creativity & Arts in Healing | creativty in motion

I am excited to be offering one of my favorite trauma informed and strength based workshops at this event: Tokens of Esteem and Affirmation, a mixed media art making session dedicated to making Artist Challenge Coins.  In the military, a Challenge Coin is a medallion symbolizing achievement or esteem. They are also given out to enhance morale and membership for members of the community. In the spirit of Challenge Coins, participants will learn how to make and use Artist Challenge Coins as tokens of affirmation, strength, and recovery.

Learning objectives:

  • Participants will describe 3 examples connected to the history and significance of Challenge Coins used to symbolize achievement, community building, and instill a sense of belonging;
  • Participants will state 3 ways Artist Challenge Coins (ACCs) can be adapted to use with a variety of populations and therapeutic settings.
  • Participants will describe a minimum of 1 value of using Challenge Coins with varied clinical populations.

Not only will we be making a series of our own coins, but participants will also  engage in a community art exchange with other workshop attendees.  I would love to have you join us- this half day workshop is scheduled for Sunday, April 2, 10 am-1pm.

To register and learn more about the Summit, its awesome line up of offerings and teaching faculty, check out www.expressivetherapiessummit.la. Early bird discounts are available through February 17!   See you in LA!

 

Creativity & The Arts in Healing | creativity in motion

Creativity & The Arts in Healing | creativity in motion

 

Creativity & The Arts in Healing | creativity in motion

 

 

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Make & Do 365

January 10, 2017

Happy 2017!   I hope your year has gotten off on a creative start!

I wanted to introduce the 365 project I decided to work on this year: Make&Do 365.  Right now I am using a journal I have had for awhile now, Things to Make and Do by Nikki McClure.  My intention is to work in it everyday through art journaling, altered art, doodling, and whatever other creative inspiration happens.

The journal is divided into several themes: plan, wish, dream, build, explore, learn, make, grow, give, and find. Great prompts to help guide me this year. Since January 1 I have been working on the pages dedicated to planning.  Seems super appropriate with the beginning of a new year ahead and thinking about & getting ready for what the next 12 months hold!  Enjoy!

Make & Do 365 | creativity in motionMake & Do 365 | creativity in motionMake & Do 365 | creativity in motionMake & Do 365 | creativity in motionMake & Do 365 | creativity in motion

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Reflections on 365 Making

December 31, 2016

Today marks the completion of another year of daily creative practice with my annual 365 project…. after being so curious what it would be like to take on this kind of challenge, I am so glad I embarked on one in 2013 on New Year’s Day…. Each year and creative undertaking since has graced me with something new to explore over the last 4 years… Towards the end of my first 365 project, I reflected on the discoveries and reminders it helped inspire.

I am re-visiting this list today to make some updates and to reflect more on honoring the lessons that continue to keep me committed to this important process:

Reflections on 365 Making | creativity in motion

1. I’m always amazed and astonished by the containment of small holding spaces in art making. Working within a small space has helped me make each 365 project manageable. Time and time again the power that this small space holds in its message, form, and process is awesome to witness.

2. Remember to slow down.  This reminder is only one of the important lessons that my 365 projects has gifted me. Taking time out to stop and pause for a moment to work on the day’s image is so important.  Sometimes it might feel like there’s no time or things are just so busy that taking this time seems impossible… but engaging in this process helps bring a grounding, focus, and presence that I have come to value and appreciate every day.

3.  Appreciate each day. Each creative piece and image is an expression of gratitude for another day.   It also allows me the opportunity to be thankful for the moment, which is important to recognize and not take for granted.

4. Trust the process. There are definitely some days that I have struggled to find time or don’t feel as connected to the image I have created in comparison to others, but at the end of the day it all works out.  The process of creating everyday outweighs the emphasis on the product. Just like art therapy!

5. I really do have 20-30 minutes everyday to create. Probably one of the biggest surprises after 4 years of consecutive creating!  It’s still true!  Some days it may have been 10 minutes, sometimes longer than a half an hour, but there was always time within each of the 1460 days.

6. Community: It has been inspiring to connect to and support others working on their 365 projects or daily creative practice through social media… 🙂

2016 also brought a couple of opportunities to share my 365 projects, which I enjoyed contributing to:

I thank everyone for their support and encouragement with this process over the last four years! It has definitely helped– ❤  I am looking forward to launching another 365 project for the new year ahead. I can’t wait to share it with you!

Happy creating in 2017- What are some of your creative goals to focus on in the next 12 months?

 

 

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Twenty16 Top Ten Year in Review

December 27, 2016

As 2016 comes to a close, I wanted to take time to reflect on some of the most read and favorite Creativity in Motion blog posts published over the last 12 months.  I am thankful for your ongoing support and interest in this blog and musings!  In 2017, it will be 9 years since I first started this blog– I’ve so enjoyed the connection, community, and creativity of the blogosphere and look forward to our future adventures! 🙂

Top Ten Blog Posts on Creativity in Motion:

illuminate365#10 — Steller: Storytelling Meets Social Media: One of the new social media platforms I have started to experiment with in 2016 is the storytelling site Steller!

Before#9 –File Folder Art Journal [VIDEO] How to Tutorial: I think this video tutorial from 2011 may be one of the most read/viewed archived posts on this blog! In August I re-blogged the post in celebration its “Top Read” status!

#8 — Cultivating Creativity, Connection, & Community: TEDx Ursuline College: In January, the TEDx talk I was invited to do for Ursuline College went live!  What an amazing opportunity to share my love of social media, creativity, and community building….

Growing Abundance | creativity in motion#7 — Art Bridges: This post from February features the online publication Art Bridges. I was super excited to be included in this resource from the Hildegard Center for the Arts. I contributed my Gratitude Tree activity first published on this blog in 2012. Art Bridges includes 70+ downloadable PDFs– great for art therapists to use with their groups or individuals, as well as teachers or anyone interested in creative enrichment with youth.

creativity in motion#6–  3 Good Things Takeaway: Creative, Messy, Contained Workshop: This post about June’s Mid Atlantic Play Therapy Institute described the fun I had attending Lani Gerity’s Visual Art Journaling Workshop…

Creative Refuge | creativity in motion

#5 — Creative Refuge: Throughout this year, I enjoyed putting together different images with creative quotes- this one was a popular one from July!

April28

#4 — Illuminate 365: Awakening & Renewal Photo Round Up

#3 — My Daily Treasure Hunt for Illumination:  Illuminate 365: I ended up documenting my 2016 365 project mostly on Facebook and Instagram this year, but here are some early posts from April and June I was excited to blog about!

Have Art Supplies: Will Travel | creativity in motion#2 —  Have Art Supplies, Will Travel: Summer 2016 Mobile Art Stash: As I was gearing up for some summer travel adventures, this post from May gave a quick overview about some of my preparation for art making while on the go!

Art Therapy: Finding Help, Finding Hope | creativity in motion

#1 — Art Therapy: Finding Help, Finding Hope: The most popular post from 2016 was in honor of this year’s Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day and spotlighting the value of art therapy for the teens I work with.

 

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A few of my favorite creative moments and collaborations from this year also include:

The Random Acts of Art Adventure returning back to 6 Degrees of Creativity Headquarters in March…

Introducing Ursuline College Counseling and Art Therapy students to Peace Paper

October’s Hope-filled Postcard Art Exchange!

These 2016 published writings:

Online art therapy groups for young adults with cancer (February)

Implications of National Trends in Digital Media Use for Art Therapy Practice (July)

Social Media and Creative Motivation (November)

Here’s to another artful year for us all with lots of creative goodness– Very best wishes to you and yours in 2017!  ❤

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Digital Art Therapy: Material, Methods, and Applications

November 28, 2016

If you are interested in learning more about current topics and practices related to digital art therapy, Jessica Kingsley Publishers just released a new book edited by Rick Garner entitled Digital Art Therapy: Material, Methods, and Applications.

Digital Art Therapy: Material, Methods, and Applications

As the field of digital art therapy rapidly expands, this book guides readers through the many applications of digital media in art therapy. With consideration of professional and ethical issues, expert contributors discuss materials and methods, with case examples to show how digital art therapy works in practice.

The text includes twelve chapters addressing a wide variety of art therapy approaches using and about digital media, such as stop motion, green screen technology, apps, light painting, and virtual reality.  Using technology in art therapy with youth who have autism, adults with traumatic brain injury, adolescents, as well as for supervision and assessment are also explored.

I am excited to also have contributed a chapter to this inspiring collection of content and co-authors. My chapter Social Media and Creative Motivation explores the relationship and impact social media can have on cultivating creative motivation, including considerations and examples about leveraging online and social networking sites as a means for inspiration, engagement, community, and connection.

My chapter was initially inspired by this blog post published on Creativity in Motion a couple of years ago.  That post reflected on archived Brainzooming content published by Mike Brown about how social media motivates creativity to create/make things/do creative stuff. Also included in my chapter are some of the collaborative projects I have worked on over the years, such as Spaces and Places: Where We Create and the Random Acts of Art Adventure. Examples such as Seth Apter’s The Altered Page and the Art Therapy Alliance’s Art Therapy Blog Index are also highlighted. The chapter offers an overview about how online activity in the form of collaboration, blogging, and social media sites can foster creative opportunities and encouragement.

I know I have inspired by so many creatives online and I am grateful for this connection! It was fun to write this chapter and I thank Rick for the invitation to be included in his book with such an amazing group of art therapy colleagues doing such great work related to digital art therapy.

I hope if the topic of digital art therapy interests you, you will check the book out!  🙂

Related Posts:

Implications of National Trends in Digital Media Use for Art Therapy Practice

Cultivating Creativity, Connection & Community | TEDx Ursuline College

Exploring Internet Based Platforms with Digital Art-based Approaches

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Creative Deeding in Action

October 13, 2016

This past month has seen much creative deeding!  The Hope-filled Postcard Art Exchange that Nancy Lautenbach and I organized went super well with almost 100 participants swapping art across the US, Canada, Europe, Australia, and Asia— You can check out some of the postcard art submitted on the 6 Degrees of Creativity Facebook page and on Instagram — So much hopeful energy and positive vibes shared through the handcrafted images made specifically for this collaborative effort! These blog posts from art therapists who participated in the exchange described more about their process: Carolyn Mehlomakulu’s  The Power of Hope-filled Art  and Sally Swain’s Clouds of Hope.  Thank you to everyone who contributed to this project!

I also recently received word that undergraduate art therapy students at Millikin University implemented their own creative deed project for their Materials and Methods class, inspired by last year’s 365 project.  It was awesome to learn about their efforts from their instructor, art therapist Serena Duckrow and to see the art and creative goodness they were spreading to others on their campus.

 Millikin University Creative Deeds

In addition to the art that was made for the project, the students also used photography, video, and video editing to document the experience. They really valued the role that digital media played in their process. I love the idea of video being part of the project and seeing the different locations creative deeds were released. Below is a video that the students made to showcase their project, which they called #MUCreativeDeed. Enjoy this dose of uplifting art and messages of encouragement, self care, and support….

What is great about creative deeding is that anyone, anywhere, anytime can do it! Creative deed on! 🙂

 

 

 

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Steller: Storytelling Meets Social Media

September 17, 2016

I recently began publishing on Steller, the mobile storytelling app that allows users to share photos, video & text to share experiences and moments:

Steller: Storytelling Meets Social Media | creativity in motion

Steller: Storytelling Meets Social Media | creativity in motion

I am curious to see this growing social media platform continue to grow and as a way for artists, creatives & art therapists to share their voice! 🙂  What do you think about its creative possibilities?

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Creative Deed Project: “Art-filled Hope” Postcard Art Exchange

August 29, 2016

A new 6 Degrees of Creativity collab has been launched! A Creative Deed Postcard Art Exchange called “Art-filled Hope”- Learn how to get involved and contribute below:

6 Degrees of Creativity

“When all else seems lost and steeped in hopelessness, the magic of creativity can still keep you going.” – Jyoti Arora

Earlier this summer at the national art therapy conference in Baltimore, inspiration for a new creative collaboration was sparked during a 6 Degrees of Creativity meet-up, as well as a focus group I led on social media’s impact on creative motivation. These initial dialogues resulted in art therapist Nancy Lautenbach and me to brainstorm ideas for a new creative collaboration. In the spirit of the Creative Deed Project launched by 6 Degrees of Creativity in 2014 and Nancy’s viewing of The Big Hope Show at the American Visionary Art Museum while we were in Baltimore, we are excited to announce a postcard art exchange called “Art-filled Hope”.

IMG_7980The project: Create 3 handmade postcards with original art that will be sent through the postal mail to three different individuals…

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File Folder Art Journal [VIDEO] How to Tutorial

August 4, 2016

From the archives– A Top Read today on the blog and one of my favorites! 🙂

creativity in motion

During a recent art therapy supervision session, I was re-introduced (thanks Mary!) to the technique of taking a basic file folder and re-purposing it into a mini book that could be used as an art journal.  I wanted to remember the folding sequence and steps involved, so I decided to do a quick, short how-to video and thought other creatives would also be interested in trying this fun, easy, and inexpensive idea.  Materials you will need to get started include a file folder (with side tabs, not a middle tab) and some glue:

Here’s some written steps:

1. Start with the tab in the upper right hand corner.

2. Fold the folder up from the bottom straight across so the tab curves line up.  This will create four pockets inside of the journal.

3. Next start with the right side and begin to fold this into the middle, making sure…

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Creative Refuge

July 25, 2016

Creative Refuge | creativity in motion

Truth.

 

For lots more artsy quotes and images , check out this collection on Pinterest.

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