My days spent walking through life with people in wilderness therapy, art, youth work, and mental health settings has lead me to envisioning and creating ArtfulSoulscapes. I am currently a practicing Art Therapist (ATR-BC/LMFT), and my love for people, creativity and nature have influenced my artwork and approach to counseling, teaching and mentoring others. I see life as an adventure to be shared and feel most alive when inviting others into the journey with me. On a day off you might find me in nature rock-climbing, mountain biking, backpacking, snowboarding or skiing, doing yoga, or making music or art. It's in these places I have discovered my own resiliency, integrated faith, and authentic voice. My deepest passion is helping others also discover the depths of their strength, contentment and meaningful participation in their lives. I invite people of all ages into the transformative power of the creative process, the natural world, adventure and experiences abroad.
Do I need any experience with art? What if I'm not good at drawing? Do I have to make art if I work with you?
No, traditional talk therapy is also an approach I use if someone is not comfortable making art. However, I also have many clients who do not have experience or feel comfortable at first, but over time come to relax and fully enjoy and benefit from the art process. I do specialize in experiential modalities but have clients who have also benefited greatly from our work through traditional therapy.
What is art therapy?
Art therapy is based on the belief that the creative process involved in artistic self-expression helps people of all ages to resolve conflicts and problems, develop interpersonal skills, manage behavior, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and self-awareness, and achieve insight. Art therapy greatly impacts the physical and emotional well-being of people and communities.
What does "trauma-informed" mean?
Trauma informed refers to training I've received about how the body and the brain respond to trauma. I understand the treatment approaches in somatic experiencing and EMDR and use the art therapy process to support these trauma treatments. The core of traumatic reactions are physiological. Art therapy can be very helpful for people who have experienced trauma as it provides opportunities for self-soothing, supporting resilience, creating safety and working with all levels of the brain to re-integrate stories of trauma.
Who can benefit from art therapy and how do I know if it is for me?
People of all ages, cultures, backgrounds and interests can benefit from art therapy. Art accesses a playful, spontaneous, intuitive, colorful, non-verbal place in all of us. It helps us become aware of our critic, reactions in our body and where we hold stress. I love seeing transformation in people when they discover they can "respond" verses "react" to anxiety and fear, to self-doubt and stories they tell themselves that direct their life choices. I support people in exploring many avenues of art along the expressive arts continuum and beyond (ie) from colored pencil and graphite to paint, plaster, clay, wood, photography and graphic art.
Do you interpret my art?
I do not interpret your art. I believe that you are the expert of your life and the art comes from you. How you experience the process also reflects part of your story. My role is to help you notice what's being reflected back to you, to ask questions that lead to deeper insight, and to model how to use materials and how to relax into the process. Sometimes I teach specific processes such as making creative journals. However, the experience is much more than a satisfying product at the end of the day.
Explain "experiences in nature."
The experiences I offer range from 1 hour, half day, full day, to weekend and weeklong immersions in natural spaces. They range in activity level and focus depending on the needs of a person or group. The focus may be making art, basic yoga, walking/hiking, backpacking or climbing. The natural world is the place where I feel most at home and have seen children, youth, and adults of all ages come to life with energy, inspiration, and deep healing when immersed in the simplicity, beauty, and natural challenges of nature.
How can I be informed of upcoming retreats, workshops, and supervision experiences?
All upcoming events will be noted on my website. I also send out quarterly newsletters. Please contact me if you are interested in being added to my mailing list.
Do you take insurance?
Currently workshops and retreats are not covered by insurance. Individual sessions are covered under the umbrella of Smart Therapy.
Do you offer CEU's and/or Supervision credit for your workshops/retreats?
Yes, Please inquire--workshops, retreats and treks are approved on a case by case basis.
What does it mean to be an LMFT?
LMFT stands for licensed marriage and family therapist. To me, family is defined in many ways: yes, our family of origin, but also our community abroad, our elders, our children, our partners, climbing and faith communities and creative communities. Many of our neighboring countries function through the mindset that if we strengthen the community we can strengthen the individual. My LMFT lens looks for ways to help strengthen community and thus resiliency in those I work with. I work with people to envision, and re-create their"family"systems so that people feel less isolation, darkness and disconnection; and more light, energy, support and rootedness through connection with others. This lens also seeks to understand the whole environment impacting individuals and communites.