The power of art

Whether you use art as a therapy or just because it’s your passion, there are many therapeutic benefits to it. From the slightest doodle to the most trompe l’ eoil painting, every image is worth a thousand words. Also, doing art is best when not working under the strict guidelines of a fine arts classroom because art is also a creative outlet and not something that should be restricted.

If you look at even the illegal graphite images closely and especially at the person behind the image, you will see that even the writing or image is not there merely for the sake of being there. Graphite artists typically do their thing for a variety of reasons from passing their message on to marking their gangs’ territory.

Especially for small children who have not yet developed expansive vocabulary, it’s often easier for them to draw an image on their mind on a piece of paper than it is for them to try to explain it verbally. Also, there’s just something about transferring a mental image on a piece of paper or other physical material that is so releasing.

Probably the fact that when you transfer the image, it tends to lead to a certain feeling of peace and relaxation; you basically give permission for the image to leave your mind. This is very similar to how the release of physical toxins works as a result of having received an alternative healing modality such as massage or Reiki.

Therapeutic art is also particularly effective for those with autism as they have a variety of sensory issues and in some cases, do not have a high verbal ability. For them, working with art as a therapy has also been known to help them overcome those sensory issues and increase their tolerance especially for touch.

There are numerous advantages to using art as a healing modality. Although if the person you’re doing art with has a very resistant and fragile mental illness, such as schizophrenia, you want to be careful not to trigger a paranoia and/or hallucinatory episode by trying to make something vivid and self-disguising such as a mask, with them. Instead, try to have them make something of their own choosing by a drawing, manipulating clay, etc.

Art is unlimited and you can do just about anything with it from simple doodling to creating your own books to creating graphics. Art probably would not know a box even if it could see one. The reason its creativity is unlimited is because our ability to create is unlimited.  Also, unless it’s a project that you’re doing for a school’s fine arts class, it’s up to you as to whether you want to share your piece or not after you finish it.

Art may be unlimited but words are weak when it comes to trying to explain the uniqueness of creativity. But then, again, does a picture really need a lot of words to explain itself? In art, you can basically assign your own meaning and feeling to it. With art, there is no right or wrong. There is only the message.