The American Art Therapy Association provides education, research, legislative advocacy, ethical standards, and a network of over 5,000 art therapists worldwide. Here's a link to their publication on art therapy research: Art Therapy Outcome Bibliography.
In this article, Good Therapy explains more about how art therapy works: Creative Healing: Frequently Asked Questions about How Art Therapy Works .
Art Therapist and scholar, Dr. Cathy Malchiodi highlights current research about the benefits of art therapy with chronic illness in this pdf: Short Bibliography of Art Therapy and Health Care Research and Resources .
Dr. Malchiodi (2013) also offers a definition of art therapy:
Art therapy is the application of the visual arts and the creative process within a therapeutic relationship, to support, maintain, and improve the psychosocial, physical, cognitive and spiritual health of individuals of all ages. It is based on current and emerging research that art making is a health-enhancing practice that positively impacts the quality of life. Art therapists are credentialed professionals who use specific art-based approaches with children, adults, groups and families to support, maintain, and improve overall health, physical, emotional and cognitive functioning, interpersonal skills, personal development, and quality of life.
Art Therapy Without Borders is a non-profit that promotes international and humanitarian art therapy initiatives. Here's a link to their site: Art Therapy Without Borders .
Art Therapy in the News
This Washington Post article highlights a powerful program for veterans: Helping Soldiers with Traumatic Brain Injuries through Art Therapy.
This Chicago Tribune article presents an art therapy program for women and girls with eating disorders, trauma, addiction, and related issues: Timberline Knolls and Lemont Center for the Arts Host Third Annual Community Art Exhibit.
This article features a Naval base art therapy program for combat veterans: Art Therapy Exhibit Helps Overcome Combat Trauma, Creates Awareness.
This brief news clip presents an art therapy program for children who have survived natural disasters: Art Therapy Organization Helps Children in Moore Cope at Moore Public Library.
A New York art therapy program is featured in this article: Art Therapy Center Pioneers Group for Divorced Families.
About Clinical Counseling
According to the California Board of Behavioral Sciences: "Professional clinical counseling" is defined as the application of counseling interventions and psychotherapeutic techniques to identify and remediate cognitive, mental, and emotional issues, including personal growth, adjustment to disability, crisis intervention, and psychosocial and environmental problems. "Professional clinical counseling" includes conducting assessments for the purpose of establishing counseling goals and objectives to empower individuals to deal adequately with life situations, reduce stress, experience growth, change behavior, and make well-informed rational decisions.
For more on LPCC's and the distinctions among LPCC's, LMFT's, and LCSW's, click here.
Lea Payne Scott, M.P.H. is a local Social and Behavioral Health Educator who offers workshops, study groups, and consultations for parents and educators throughout San Luis Obispo County. She's a wonderful local resource. Here's a link to her site.
Tina Payne Bryson, Ph.D. is co-author of The Whole Brain Child and No Drama Discipline. Her books and blog are great sources of practical ideas and inspiration for parents and others who care for and work with children.
Pediatrician Dr. Stephen Cowan shares his thoughts on parenting in this article: 11 Things I Wish Every Parent Knew.
Check out the International Child Art Foundation and their remarkable programs with children worldwide:
The ICAF's programs inspire imagination (Arts Olympiad), reduce violence (Peace through Art), and remediate suffering (Healing Arts). The ICAF introduces children to the ‘artist-athlete’ ideal of creative mind and healthy body; develops their imagination and creativity through the arts, and discipline and teamwork through sports; and promotes STEAMS education by integrating Arts and Sport (and play) into the STEM disciplines for children’s holistic development.