Post-Session Art as a Conduit for Self-Care

by Pearl Paul

This thesis explores how making post-session art contributes to the self-care of an art therapist intern and aspiring professional practitioner. The research inquiry was conducted from a heuristic approach using an arts-based research methodology. This thesis demonstrates how exploring both the process of creation and the artistic product helps to reveal outcomes and essences from which it is possible to formulate further research and hypothetical questions. The results are presented in a summary of three themes: awareness, integration and the cultivation of an art therapist identity culled from a distillation of 10 salient and poignant observations affirming and expanding upon the value of doing post-session art in relationship to self-care. The observed outcomes provide the reader with resources to apply these learnings to his or her personal situation and equally for professional development.