Can Art Be Theraputic?

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Art TherapyI went to a wonderful Psychotherapist a few years back who got me to draw the emotion I was experiencing at that particular time.  It was amazing.  I remember I was feeling deep, intense anger and so I grabbed a big red crayon and spread that anger all over the paper, then I grabbed a big fat black crayon and wrote angry swearing words all over it – I felt great afterwards, getting it out there and onto something I could see.  After talking through what I had expressed and feeling much calmer I sat down and did another drawing.  This one was light and full of lovely colour, it was such a contrast to my original.  I walked out of her office that day feeling much lighter and peaceful. 
This “Transpersonal Art Therapy” and can be very powerful.  Here, Debra Coulson tells us about this amazing therapy and how it can help (the picture above is Debra’s own Inner Wisdom creation)…

So, what is transpersonal art therapy?

Transpersonal art therapy is a client-centred, holistic approach to healing mind, body, emotions, spirit and personal growth. A transpersonal art therapist will support you to engage creatively with your unconscious, or inner wisdom, to find your own answers and pathways to realising your full potential and living an authentic life.

Life’s journey brings many joys and experiences, some of which may leave us deeply wounded. Transpersonal art therapists know that your deepest and most profound life wounds may hold the key to a meaningful life. They know this because their training requires them to work with their own wounds in order to find inner strength, wisdom, compassion and empathy for the woundedness of others. A transpersonal art therapist will hold you in unconditional positive regard so you can feel safe to explore even your darkest, most challenging fears.

Connecting again…

Many of us lose our connection with or forget to trust in our innate wisdom or authentic Self. We may lose our true purpose and search for fulfilment outside ourselves through work, possessions, other people, relationships, addictions, keeping busy or focusing on outer beauty. If you’ve lost touch with your authentic Self or want to strengthen your connection, a transpersonal art therapist will journey with you, offering powerful yet gently creative processes that will guide you to heal and reunite with the person you were born to be.

You don’t need to be an artist to engage in art therapy. The finished product is less important than the insight you gain through your artwork. We don’t interpret your work, we simply guide you to explore its meaning for you.

Time to play…

You will be offered a wide range of creative processes and media to help you find the best way to express yourself including pastels, paint, pens, collage, craft materials, clay, masks and meditation, sound, movement, dreams, symbols, stories or sand play to connect with your innermost wisdom.

Transpersonal art therapy can help you to connect with, express and release emotions such as grief, anger, loss, rage, fear or helplessness that are not easy to deal with on your own. Art is a powerful medium for getting in touch with and expressing emotions for which words are not sufficient.

Abused? Overwhelmed?

Clients who have suffered a lifetime of abuse and violence have found hope and strength and art therapy is increasingly used to help veterans and others suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder. Clients who are overwhelmed, confused or seeking meaning, life purpose or direction have been galvanized into focused, effective action after just one or two sessions.

Desolute Inner LandscapeRenewal and New Life

You can see this clearly above.   The picture on the left expresses a desolate inner landscape destroyed by childhood abuse. The picture on the right expresses renewal and new life. The inner landscape changes after a transpersonal art therapy process.

Journey to healing…

Although transpersonal art therapy can be life changing, powerfully healing and transformative we believe that you, the client have the innate wisdom to lead your own journey to healing and self-realisation, at your own time, in your own way. We will journey with you, without expectation or pressure, as you navigate your way to wholeness and wellbeing.



Debra CoulsonAbout Debra Coulson:

Debra is a transpersonal art therapist, social ecologist and coach with many years experience facilitating transformative change and learning with individuals, groups and organisations. Debra works with individuals and groups through her private practice, Choosing Life, and through the Women’s Cottage, a crisis and drop in centre for women of the Hawkesbury District of Sydney.

She also works remotely with clients through Skype and is open to group teleclasses. Debra may be contacted be email at:

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