Does art really have healing powers???
After my experience the past few months, I would definitely say yes! I haven’t been interested in art much since I was a youngster and I found a few books at the library. Other than that, I’ve basically been a jock all my life. A great family relative of mine came to visit one day and gave some great tips, not to mention some great tools to help me get started (Thanks Sheila!). I’ve been hooked ever since, drawing almost everyday. It calms me and makes me feel good and proud of my work (even if I’m still a beginner). Here’s a few things I’ve worked on in the past 2 months:
I decided to practice what I preach and drew a picture today to release some energy against my situation (FYI – we are NOT our circumstances, we are much more! Here’s a picture I’d like to call “FUCK YOU LOL!”. i am happy it’s looks a little crappy. It gave me a chance to just draw and not worrying what it looks like!
I am now going to rip it up and throw it away. FYI – lots of improper language in this image, don’t share with your children :-)
However, don’t just take my word for it. There are many experts that mention the same thing. Here’s one link I found that specifically talks about using drawing tools to help heal from a cancer diagnosis.
Art is a powerful tool in the healing of the mind-body language. Medical science has proven that making art, drawing, painting, sculpture and collage, has a healing function that reduces the physiological stress triggered from a cancer diagnosis. The immune system then has a chance to heal and work at it’s best to relieve pain, heal depression, and raise the spirit.
I have seen first hand the healing power of art with my husband and his fight with cancer. As a caregiver, art has helped me as well. Negative and fearful emotions of a cancer diagnosis within the family can torment the mind, damage the body, not to mention suppress the spirit. If we can express these emotions through color, form, shape, and image, the path is cleared for the healing to begin.
Art also can help with other diseases, namely Alzheimer’s disease. My mother died a few months ago from Alzheimer’s. As her caretaker, watching the decline of her mind and spirit was extremely emotional. When we began to bring her to our Art for the Soul class, she blossomed and opened up. Art became the best medicine for her. Emotions were in check, blood pressure was lowered and she had a new purpose and joy in her life.
Cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, PTSD, mental health issues, and other health problems can be helped with the powerful and simple tool of making art. The statistics for dance, music and art therapy are all the same. They are all tools for healing, but with art, there is the drawing, painting, sculpture, etc. that can be viewed everyday with a reminder of the good feelings that came of doing it.
And lastly here’s a great quote from the one and only Picasso:
“Art washes away from the soul, the dust of everyday life.”
I feel that art can help anyone, as our bodies need to recover and heal, even if we don’t have a chronic illness. I’m not saying it’s for everyone, but if you give it a shot, you mind find it really helps you have a clearer mind and feel better. And who doesn’t want that??
Any feedback would be awesome in the comments section? Any other ideas, like reading that might help a person heal?
Off to do some art now,
Lots of love,
- Art Therapy at MSPP? The Healing Power of the Arts and Psychology (mspp.edu)
- Memory through art (elanazc.wordpress.com)
- Art Therapy Happenings and Goings On: twentythirteen fall on the go (gretchenmiller.wordpress.com)