Reconnecting with the toddler inside you who once loved the luxuriant squish of paint between your fingers might just help you ease anxiety, work through the difficult feelings that accompany a cancer diagnosis, or simply make you feel good.
There’s good reason to believe that creative self-expression isn’t just a nicety, but actually a deep human need that, when fulfilled, promotes emotional, mental, and even physical well-being. And you don’t even need to know how to draw a straight line to reap the benefits.
Art therapists, who have training in both psychotherapy and fine art, can help you harness the healing power of expressing yourself with paints, pencils, and a multitude of other media.
It was great fun finding out about The Power of Art for my latest wellbeing feature for Good Times magazine. Just one of the highlights was discovering the amazing veterans art program at the Parkwood Institute, where the participants — most of them in their 90s — prove that it’s never too late to develop your creativity and learn new skills.
Thanks to Dr. Olivier Beauchet, director of the McGill Centre for Excellence on Longevity in Montreal; Ann Pigott, an art instructor with the Veterans Arts Program at the Parkwood Institute, St. Joseph’s Healthcare London (Ont.); Lucie Sarrasin, a Montreal art therapist who works with the Quebec Cancer Foundation and CHUM (Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal); Kitchener, Ont., art therapist Jazmine Tufford-Singh; and Beth Foster.
For more information on art therapy in Canada, visit: https://www.canadianarttherapy.org/