Art therapy provides a safe creative space where art making and the relationship between you and the therapist will aim to understand negative feelings that you might be experiencing.
Encouraging uninhibited curiosity and play with art materials can ignite the artist within, leading to insights into ineffective behaviours, low self esteem, anxiety, depression, loss and bereavement.
If you are interested in having art therapy, it is not a requirement to consider yourself competent in art. Perhaps you loved painting and drawing but someone squashed your enthusiasm for it, causing you to lose confidence. Art therapy can help with this. If you prefer, visual description of dreams or unpleasant feelings can be looked at with you, the aim to move on from them.
Art therapy is a state registered profession and it is a legal requirement to be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) in order to be practising anywhere in the UK.
For Samaritans call 116 123.
Art therapy one-to-one takes place in my studio, but during the lockdown due to Covid 19 it takes place on Zoom, Skype and WhatsApp. (If you prefer email, this is also possible).
Perhaps Covid 19 has impacted on your life significantly and words may seem inadequate. Art therapy can be tailored to your specific situation.
You might be interested in being part of a weekly expressive art group, with the intention of helping you unwind from negative thoughts (perhaps increased due to the lockdown), that seem to inhabit our minds from time to time, which you might be having a hard time shaking off.
I have over 20 years experience running groups, which includes:
To promote emotional well-being by igniting the artist within, heightening self-esteem and confidence. This was funded by the Harrow MS society.
They were provided with a choice of art materials and set their own creative agenda. The cathartic process of art making enabled people to share their sense of isolation due to the closing down of the large Victorian institutions which had been their home for many years.
At this ‘drop-in’ group, people had the option of taking part in a local exhibition which highlighted their fears about their community day centre, which at that time was also under threat of closure. The participants viewed their framed artworks on public display in the Harrow Library. The exhibition was featured in the local newspaper and with active help from the public it remained open for over a year.
Vibrant art-making and candid conversations enabled the expression of many feelings which brought humour and friendship through shared experiences.
The students volunteered to be part of this group. Art making was used to engage them, and every students work was part of a large piece of work titled ‘Reach for the stars’. They were proud of their active involvement and the final group image. As a result of this, NADFAS (National Association of Decorative Fine Art Society), funded me to run one-to-one art therapy sessions for vulnerable students.
To address a number of concerns such as low self-esteem, apathy towards class instruction and feelings of being uncomfortable socializing or communicating. Small weekly student groups of from 3 to 6 have proved successful as part of school emotional care plans.
Weekly non-directive art-making enabled participants to connect with and support each other and have acknowledgement of current concerns.
These were orchestrated and developed by me with the help of all staff and students. This evoked a strong sense of community across all cultures which were united by the theme and active involvement in creating a large art work together.
I have been working continuously as an art therapist since 1994.
I am registered with the H.C.P.C. (Health and Care Professions Council), which is a legal requirement to work as an art therapist in the UK.
I have a rolling DBS verification for work with children and vulnerable adults. My public liability insurance covers me for work as an artist in health, art therapy, art therapy online and supervision.
After attaining a BA (Hons) in Fine Art, I worked in a residential school for young people on the Autistic spectrum. My interest in the evident therapeutic aspects of art-making inspired me to qualify as an art therapist at St Albans College of Art and Design.
Being a practising artist is very important to my work as an art therapist, for me, they are linked, as one seems to ignite the other.
Message me if you would prefer another channel, for example email or WhatsApp.
You do not need to consider yourself good at art, but if you are reading this, it seems you have an interest in the arts. Perhaps you might prefer talking in a visually descriptive way – painting a picture with your mind.
If you decide you would like to explore your creative side through art-making, materials and paper of your choice would be required.
From experience, if you are thinking of drawing with a pencil, a dark one would be easier to see when you hold the image up to the camera.
Expressive art therapy groups are conducted with the aim of igniting the artist within. A time for connection and creative solace from every day negative emotional hiccups.
Art therapy as a profession began in the mid-20th century.
The British artist Adrian Hill coined the term ‘art therapy’ in 1942.Recovering from tuberculosis in a sanatorium, he discovered the therapeutic benefits of drawing and painting while convalescing and recommended it to his fellow patients. That began his art therapy work, which was documented in 1945 in his book, Art Versus Illness.
Edward Adamson, “the father of art therapy in Britain” joined Adrian Hill after the Second World War to extend Hill’s work to the British mental health sector.
“Liz Derbyshire is an art therapist whose wide and lengthy experience informs and invigorates her practice.
Her past work has been wide-ranging but it is with children and young people that her work is both outstandingly sensitive and innovative.
She has adapted her practice within schools to fit without disruption into the educational setting but her work as an independent art therapist in private practice is also outstanding.
Liz is a practising artist and her approach to therapeutic practice has the same creative sensibilities as her paintings.”
“I have worked with Liz since joining The Helix Education Centre in January 2016 and she has worked with some of our youngest and most vulnerable students within our Primary unit.
Liz works with empathy and passion, making insightful comments regarding each child through detailed documentation. She genuinely cares for the children she supports.
Our students loved working with Liz and would look forward to her Wednesdays with us. They would exit her sessions visibly calmer.
Liz goes above and beyond for our children and ensures that all are safeguarded, working within the school’s safeguarding procedures at all times.”
“Liz makes me feel calm”
Introductory short meeting is free.
£65 per 50 minute session in studio.
£60 per 50 minute session online.
A block of 15 sessions – £825.
Concessions for students over 18 – get in touch.
Others with financial constraints – get in touch.
Introductory meeting is free.
There might be discounts available dependent on location.
One 6 hour day per week for 39 weeks – £11,700
15 sessions of one 6 hour day per week – £4,950
An art therapy school day
6 one-to-one sessions.
3 one-to-one sessions and a small group of no more than 4 students.
The art therapist will provide most art materials for one-to-one work, but might need a small budget to cover other art costs depending on the student’s artistic requirements. or if you choose to have a weekly group.
If you choose to have some expressive art workshops for mental health well-being or other, the cost of art materials would be on top of this but sometimes unwanted art equipment or other materials can be recycled.
A termly concise review of sessions and attendance will be provided to the school.