What to expect when you start art therapy

Where will I meet the art therapist?

  • You will meet in a private room where you won’t be interrupted, such as an art room or a meeting room.  
  • Alternatively, you may meet your art therapist in an online meeting room, using software like Zoom. 


Who will be there?

  • Depending on your needs, you will either join group therapy or individual therapy. 
  • In group therapy, you will be with the art therapist and a small group of participants. 
  • In individual therapy, it will just be you and the art therapist. 


Do I have to be good at art?

  • No, you do not need to have any previous experience or expertise in art. 
  • Art therapy is not a recreational activity or an art lesson, although the sessions can be enjoyable. 


What will we do in an art therapy session?

  • You will make art and talk (which may be done at the same time) or you can make art in silence if that’s your preference. 
  • When making art, you can choose materials that best suit you e.g., paint, pastel or clay, or you might make a collage. 
  • The art therapist may sit quietly and pay attention whilst you make art or they may make art alongside you, depending on your needs during each session. 
  • You and the art therapist will talk and think together to make sense of the thoughts, feelings and experiences that come up during your art-making or when you look at your artwork. 

I really feel that it has given me a lot more tools to deal with the things I need to deal with.

Service user, Creative Therapies Service, Exeter