Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

Art Therapy Drawing Activities

As we move into the three projective techniques that will be reviewed in this chapter, it is important to stress that central to the belief of projective testing is the process of projection. Without this core conviction no projective test will satisfy the critic. Laughlin (1970) offers this definition of projection Projection is an ego defense or mental mechanism operating outside of and beyond conscious awareness through which consciously disowned aspects of the self are rejected or disowned...

Interaction Is the

Broken Hour Glass Drawing

Anna Freud (1946) writes, The technique of translating symbols is a short cut to understanding, or, more correctly, a way of plunging from the highest strata of consciousness to the lowest strata of the unconscious without pausing (p. 16). As such, the art production allows the therapist to respond to the covert, as well as the overt, aspects of a client's psyche. An example is the mask completed by an adolescent male. This client's history included physical abuse as well as severe neglect...

Adaptation and Integration

Numerous theorists (e.g., Kernberg, 1975 Greenspan, 1979 Anna Freud, 1946) have postulated that defenses occur at specific stages of development. For example, Wilhelm Reich (1949) found a relationship between character and defense formation, while Meissner, Mack, and Semrad (1975) have grouped select defenses according to developmental phases. Malerstein and Ahern (1982) in their discussion of character structure had this to say about defense mechanisms The psyche of a person is not a...

Case Illustrations

Art Therapy Drawing Activities

Our illustrations include a pair of sisters, and an elderly male. This case involves two sisters who are resistant to visiting their biological mother. The psychosocial history reveals that the biological parents divorced when the children were toddlers. The mother quickly remarried, and the children's stepfather was physically abusive to the children as well as toward the mother (which they witnessed). At this point they were removed from their mother's care and placed with the biological...

Regression

Art Therapy Drawing Activities

The last defense mechanism we will illustrate is regression. Regression is often equated with a fixation to earlier developmental points specifically, infantile behavior patterns. The ego, to avoid anxiety or hostility, returns to a safe haven, a developmental point in the past, where it can rely upon a dependent position for comfort. The satisfaction that the individual achieves can be all encompassing, as with psychosis, or partial. Laughlin 1970 classifies regression as either minor, which...

Developing the Language of Metaphor

Sexual Metaphor Art

One cannot explore consciousness, or self-awareness, without asking how we arrive at such a state. It is widely believed that the portion of our personality that dictates our thoughts, memories, feelings, impulses, and desires is built upon a sequence of phases. As infants we respond on a pri- mary level of consciousness, which mainly encompasses sensations, instincts, and movement. As adults we become increasingly free to experience memory, language, and symbolization. All told, as humans, we...

Summary

In this chapter I have outlined three distinct assessment tools to illustrate the power of art and symbolism. In my work with the difficult client I have not found any singular projective test, therapeutic intervention, or isolated process that applies to the whole population. Instead, it is often the use of varied methodology that offers a path for the clinician to begin the process of personality integration. Although the debate on projective testing rages on, I hope that I have shown that a...

Condensation

Art Therapy Art Examples

As previously discussed, symbols are the cornerstone of art therapy. The nonverbal language of symbols speaks to us on a multiplicity of levels and incorporates not simply one memory, object, or feeling but many, which are united through the unconscious process of creation. This emotion and affect give the art its power. It is in this vein that we arrive at condensation, often classified as a minor ego defense. It is defined as a process by which several concepts, ideas, or needs are condensed...

Freud And Art Therapy

Anna Freud Child Psychotherapy

Unlike Piaget with his structured stages, Freud viewed his psychosexual stages as overlapping and therefore deficient in organized configuration. His theory is based upon the belief that deprivation of nurturance specifically maternal during infancy results in neurotic difficulties that persist well into adulthood. In a strict sense Freud was not proposing stages in personality development but tracing the vicissitudes of the sexual energy which he posited and termed libido and deemed a...

S

Art Therapy Symbols

When abandonment feelings well from within, but the black roof added to the white building gave room for hope. At this point the therapist remade the butterfly and stated, The butterfly came back and now it's stronger. This use of metaphor was less intrusive than if the therapist had attempted to explore the client's feelings of loss and abandonment in a direct manner. After noting that the blue man was now completely separated from the other objects, the therapist placed the butterfly at the...

Illustrations

1.2 Outside Mask Sessions 1 amp 2 6 1.3 Inside Mask Sessions 3 amp 4 7 1.6 Memories of Sexual Abuse 12 1.7 The Winds of the Sun 13 1.4 Feelings of Loneliness 24 1.7 Converting Memories of Sexual Abuse 28 1.10 The Blue Man and the Anger Microphone 32 1.11 The Blue Man and the Butterfly 32 1.12 He Tells Him to Do the Right Thing 33 1.13 Compartmentalizing His Emotions 33 1.14 Abandonment Feelings Well 34 1.15 The Symbol Remains the Same 35 1.17 The Snail Only Knows the Box 38 1.18 Erasing the...

In My Defense

In art therapy one accepts as basic to treatment the psychoanalytic mechanisms of repression, projection, identification, and sublimation Naumburg, 1953 . These mechanisms, used unconsciously, are incorporated to defend against feelings of anxiety that have become uncomfortable, humiliating, or shameful. Removed from the ego, experiences may be isolated, but they are never forgotten. They creep into our relationships and have the power to both protect and stifle. This repression, however, will...

Drawa Person DAP Examples

Draw Person Dap

Those of you who completed the DAP from the introduction will refer to those renderings. Everyone else should use Figure 3.2 which was completed by a healthy female who works in the mental health field see disk to view these figures in color . If you completed your drawings when first reading this book, you may not have any free associations at hand, but with a client these are of the utmost importance. How we approach a new, requested task is central to how we approach anything original and...

There Was There Was and Yet There Was

One must remember that an individual's chronological age can be very different from his or her developmental age. Thus, the use of art therapy and its concentration on symbolization, freedom of expression, and verbal and nonverbal communicative components is perfectly suited to aid in resolution at any stage of development. In addition, the use of fairy tales aids the developing personality to branch out into the world, helping patients to understand others' feelings and thereby removing them...

Difficult Client Defined

The Difficult Client

Drawing the Line Art Therapy with the Difficult Client is intended for all who have felt frustration when faced with a resistant or difficult client. In my experience as a practicing therapist, supervisor, and lecturer I have had the opportunity to listen to a myriad of clinicians discuss this very topic. What defines the difficult client Is there a set of criteria that can be applied to the whole of the population One common definition that fits each individual In fourteen years of clinical...

Info

Therapy Art Work Drawings

Therefore, as part of treatment planning, the clinician should not overlook the use of stories in the therapeutic hour. If you have assessed the stage of development properly, the client will be mesmerized by these timeless stories that speak gently to internal struggles regardless of age . I prefer to utilize the metaphors within the fairy tale, fable, myth, or legend by choosing the story that meets the client's needs. From time to time as I read the story I stop reading and direct the...

Jean Piaget

Intuitive Thought Phase Piaget

Piaget's stage theory of cognitive development in children outlined four major stages 1 sensorimotor, 2 preoperational, 3 concrete operations, and 4 formal operations. However, for the purposes of this book I will break down the two phases within the Preoperational stage, as these phases are exceedingly important to the growing child's development. All of these stages not only occur in continuous progressions but allow the individual to interact with the environment with increasing levels of...

House TreePerson HTP Examples

Htp Test Abusive Children

The client is a single young adult male. Records indicate that his parents were divorced when he was a toddler, and he has focused his anger on his mother. She states that while in preschool he threw a burning stick at her and was later found standing over her with a pair of scissors. These episodes never resulted in any physical injuries but would end in screaming matches. From this time forward he lived with his father, who physically abused him on numerous occasions. He has been incarcerated...

Intellectualization

Intellectualization Pictures

Intellectualization is defined as an emotional response, or impulse, that is controlled by thinking instead of experiencing. The thoughts are a protection, or defense, against anxiety due to unacceptable impulses. Intel-lectualization seeks to make a connection between drives and ideational content. In this way drives are perceived as more under ego control which can operate in the area of words and intellect as an active coping device to handle aggression Malmquist, 1985, p. 58 . Simply...

Directives

Art Therapy Pitr Person The Rain

Just as art projective assessments offer the clinician guidance for treatment planning, directives provide a framework for the therapeutic hour. Throughout the first part of this book the great majority of drawings resulted from directives. These directives were not offered haphazardly but were designed around the client's maturation process. Based upon Erikson's premise that emerging conflict must be mastered in order to prepare the individual for future growth and integrity, the use of...

House TreePerson HTP Art Assessments

Not unlike Karen Machover's DAP assessment, the HTP has been modified from its original design and now tends to be shortened both in degree and application. However, as outlined earlier, this modified version can still yield accurate data when combined with Buck's scoring system for aptitude and intelligence. In the end the HTP yields both conscious and unconscious information concerning the client's personality, interpersonal relationships, and interactions with the environment. As a result,...

Eight Card Redrawing Test CRT

The last projective test that we will review is the 8CRT, developed by Caligor. Unlike the HTP or the DAP, this assessment procedure never gained favor among working professionals. In fact, in my schooling experience I never even heard of the 8CRT it was only through a fluke that I stumbled upon a review of the process in a journal article. However, once I began incorporating this test into my routine, I found it to be an indispensable tool. In 1957 Caligor lamented the restriction posed by the...

Interpreting the

If one believes that experience dictates our self-concept and this self-concept dictates our growth and wholeness, then how does a clinician tap into this sense of self This ethereal quality that lives nowhere but exists within us all changes for the better or the worse with time and embraces our anxieties, joys, resentments, responsibilities, pleasures, and fears. How does one break through the well-honed defenses that protect us from psychic pain and emerge with an unvarnished view Art. Art...

House TreePerson HTP

The HTP art assessment was introduced by John Buck in the late 1940s and was designed to aid the clinician in obtaining information concerning an individual's sensitivity, maturity, efficiency, degree of personality integration, and interaction with the environment, specifically and generally Buck, 1966, p. 1 . The structural elements of DAP interpretation explained in the DAP section and Appendix A remain the same in the HTP. However, this is where the similarity ends. The HTP's formal details...