Expressive Arts Therapy
Art has the power to render sorrow beautiful,
make loneliness a shared experience, and transform despair into hope.
Who I Am
Expressive Arts Therapy is a resource-oriented counselling method rooted in mindfulness. Expressive Arts Therapy can be used in sessions with clients of all ages. Each session, like any other form of counselling, is held by the strong therapeutic relationship between the therapist and the client. In both group and individual work clients can move through difficulties while uncovering their personal strengths. The creative process in sessions is not pinned down to one medium and often sessions move through multiple modalities (such as visual arts, photography, writing, storytelling, movement, play or music) to deepen the experience in the work. The process is not about analyzing the art, or about making "good" art, but rather about trying something out in a mind set of self study. While therapeutic conversation can be an important part of the process, many of the shifts and surprises come from an experience that engages the imagination and senses. I find that most of the time people come to counselling with an idea of how or where they feel stuck, yet cannot seem to change. I have seen time and time again that a therapy experience in the arts can be the movement that helps the person become unstuck.
I am an art-maker, nature lover, cyclist and committed life long learner. I believe that all people deserve dignity, respect and agency which should be reflected in their therapy process. I stay inspired in my practice by consistently working with all ages (children, youth and adults). My approach combines relational talking with expressive arts therapy to support growth and change for each person who comes to me. Each session is a collaborative process of me both guiding and following. The therapy process may look different for each person as I respond to needs of that individual, on that day, in that moment. I aim to guide people and families to move through difficulties while at the same time uncovering and cultivating their unique strengths. I genuinely care about the people who come to me, which people consistently communicate to me has a deep impact on their healing and development in our work together. I believe that using the arts (metaphors, writing, painting, sound, movement, storytelling, play) in therapy sessions in combination with talking is a powerful and effective way of promoting meaningful change and personal healing.
I offer sessions to people who have experienced a range of challenges including: life transitions, grief, burnout, sexual abuse, gender-based violence, identity exploration and questioning, anxiety and depression, among other things.
Education and Experience
I hold a Masters in Expressive Arts Therapy and Psychology from the European Graduate School. Prior to this I obtained a Certificate in Expressive Arts Therapy through the Vancouver Expressive Arts Program and a BFA in Painting through the University of Alberta. I am a Registered Therapeutic Counsellor (RTC), Master Therapeutic Counsellor (MTC), and Registered Counselling Supervisor with the Association of Cooperative Counselling Therapists of Canada.
I bring 8 years of Therapy experience directly supporting children, youth and adults working through challenges. I was honoured to spend over 3.5 years of this time as a Community Counsellor in a small first nations community and now currently work in private practice and at a Family Counselling Agency on a child and youth team in the Counselling and Sexual Abuse Program.
I am a supervisor in the Vancouver School of Expressive Arts Therapy Diploma program.