What is Art Therapy?

Today, a dear friend of mine, Judith Campanaro, has generously provided a free download of an illustrated 10-page article she recently published with Drawspace. Following is a short excerpt from this publication:

Art therapy is a unique experience based on using the medium of art as an instrument of change. Rather than learning conventional techniques and modalities, art therapy approaches the medium in a natural experiential way. This process automatically creates a safe and non-threatening place thereby allowing you to shift your inner awareness and discover new emotions and presentation of yourself.

When you are doing art, you are in charge. You get to pick the tools, the colors, the concepts. You can scribble, draw stick people, draw sunshine and rainbows or rain clouds and storms. It doesn’t matter. No talent required. Through the process of creating, you will discover an age old healing balm that soothes and restores the soul. You will find your own internal voice and learn the way in which you interact with the world around you.


The brain wave testing on artists shows that when they are looking at art or doing art they run beta and delta waves. So an artist naturally accesses the very deep unconscious that is usually only tapped during deep sleep. When you are doing any form of art you experience the consciousness that you reach beyond the frontal cortex, beyond the thinking mind of the cerebral cortex.

Art therapy taps that place where you are awake but you are actually creating change and working with some of the deep recesses within your mind. By going within and creating art, the right side of the brain can speak through the drawings.


Creating art is a means of watching yourself closely for self-defeating ways you respond to the world around you. Your artwork will speak to you louder than words. Pay attention to the colors you use, the shapes, the symbols and you will find a brand new alphabet that brings clarity and understanding to your personal issues and growth.

~Judith Campanaro~

An art therapist by trade, Judith Campanaro holds a BA in Psychology, an MA in Professional Counseling, and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Art Therapy. She lives in sunny California. As a Creative Arts Therapist, she facilitates empowerment through creative expression.

Drawspace is now a secure site so you may need to register (for free) to download this free lesson. Sorry for the inconvenience.


About Brenda Hoddinott
Award-winning artist and author; illustrator, art educator, curriculum designer, co-owner of Drawspace.com, owner of Drawspace Publishing, and retired forensic artist Brenda has developed art curricula and taught multidisciplinary arts since 1980. During her 25-year career as a forensic artist, Brenda worked with diverse criminal investigative agencies including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Canadian Department of National Defense, private investigative agencies, and municipal police departments. Brenda and her partner John live in the suburbs of Halifax, Nova Scotia with their two SPCA rescue dogs: Timber the Huskador and Katie the Pitweiler. Their blended human family includes five adult children and two grandchildren. Books by Brenda Hoddinott include: 2012: Introduction to Contour Lines (Drawspace Publishing) 2012: Introduction to Drawing (Drawspace Publishing) 2011: Illustrated Dictionary of Art-Related Terms (Drawspace Publishing) 2010: Getting Started with Drawing (Drawspace Publishing) 2004: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Drawing People Illustrated (Alpha Books) 2003: Drawing for Dummies (Wiley Publishing, Inc.)

One Response to What is Art Therapy?

  1. Pegi says:

    Have you seen “I Remember Better When I Paint”? I’ve always known art is more than just a talent…it’s necessary to include ion everyones lives, young and old. I’m SO fascinated by art as therapy!!!


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