PSYCHOTHERAPY AND COACHING FOR ARTISTS AND CREATIVE INDIVIDUALS
While creative individuals are innately talented, with certain genetic traits and predispositions to certain kinds of personality traits, these natural gifts can be supported, developed, organized, and refined, to support meaningful productively. Coaching can provide you with practical skills to enhance creativity, artistic growth, and productivity.
Creativity can be understood through an analysis of the creative person, process, product, and environmental press (external influences). Problems in one or more of these arenas can wound a creative individual or disrupt the creative process. However, with support, problems can be transformed into opportunities and ultimately enhance the creative process.
ARTISTS AND HIGHLY CREATIVE
INDIVIDUALS ARE A SPECIAL POPULATION WITH UNIQUE NEEDS.
I can assist you with setting and achieving goals, establishing effective studio practices, applying time management principles, finding your unique sources of inspiration, developing commitment to your work, finding passion, developing or changing your individual style, or exploring potent imagery. You define the problems to be addressed during our work together.
Creativity can be practiced as a way heal individuals, communities, and our little planet, serve as a spiritual practice, or used to explore personal mythology.
Sometimes, there are wounds from past experiences with teachers, professors, parents, or other significant others, that continue to affect creativity and productivity in the present. Also, relationships with significant others, partners, spouses, children, etc., are affected when someone in the family system is an artist. The conventional idea of family might conflict with achieving healthy relationships in families that include artists. Meeting with couples or family members can be helpful to the artists and to everyone involved.
TRANSFORM BLOCK INTO CREATIVE FLOW,
CONNECT WITH PASSION AND PURPOSE,
DEVELOP SUPPORTIVE RELATIONSHIPS,
BUILD YOUR CAREER.
Our work together can also be growth oriented, providing insight, depth, richness, and higher functioning in your interior world, personal relationships, and creative work as you discover how to transform the raw material of life into work that is meaningful to yourself and others.
Accomplished artists sometimes experience crippling anxiety related to performance, exhibits, or other public presentations of creative work. Artists sometimes hold onto beliefs that undermine success in career development ("I'm too left-brained to handle the business aspect of my career"), continue painful patterns ("I must suffer to make great art"), avoid actions that might lead to rejection, or other self-defeating behaviors that negatively affect creativity and productivity. These thought patterns can be defined, the roots of the problem can be identified, psychotherapeutic interventions can be applied, and then alternate patterns can be practiced, leading to new ways of being that support higher levels of creativity, artistic production, and career growth.
ARTISTS MAY HAVE INTENSE EMOTIONS,
THE ABILITY TO MINE TREASURES OF
INSIGHT DURING LOW POINTS, AND
ENJOY RIDING HIGH ON THE ECSTASY
OF FLOWING PRODUCTIVITY.
At moderate levels, these high waves and low troughs are assets to creativity and do not necessarily have negative affects on daily life or work. But, if the highs are too high or the lows are too low, then creative productivity and daily life suffer.
Certain kinds of personality traits, particular challenges in relationships and families, and neurological functions that result in unique and unconventional ways of thinking are often typical of artists and highly creative individuals. Each arena can be refined, strengthened, enhanced, and developed to further artistic and creative growth.
ACTUALIZING CREATIVE TALENT ALSO REQUIRES ADEQUATE ABILITY IN EACH OF THE FOUR FUNCTIONS IDENTIFIED BY CARL JUNG, NAMELY FEELING, THINKING, INTUITION, AND SENSATION.
Feeling is related to emotional expressiveness. Thinking is applied during research, self-critique, and logical problem solving. Intuition provides guidance into unknown territory. Sensation is engaged during manipulation of artistic media that use the senses of hearing, touch, sight, and (more rarely) taste and smell.
Although these functions are rarely balanced in any one work of art or, for that matter, within any individual artist, each function plays an important role that can be developed more fully.
IF PROVIDED BY A PRACTITIONER
WHO IS KNOWLEDGEABLE
ABOUT ARTISTS AND CREATIVITY,
PSYCHOTHERAPY AND COACHING
CAN SUPPORT ARTISTIC WAYS OF BEING
WHILE ENHANCING CREATIVITY,
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL RELATIONSHIPS,
AND FUNCTIONING IN DAILY LIFE.
Many typically unconventional ways of artistic being, such as rich imagination, daydreaming, fluid access to the unconscious, preference for unconventional styles of dress or behavior, or the ability to work through the night when inspired, can be misinterpreted as psychopathology that should be "cured." However, these actions can be typical, even desirable, elements in the creativity process. Yet, if unbalanced or out of control, the creator and artist might not get adequate sleep, find performing regular daily tasks difficult, or lack grounding in reality.
As a professional artist, a psychologist with systems training in psychotherapy for individuals, couples, and families, and additional formal study of the psychology of creativity, I provide clients with practical knowledge, genuine caring, and personalized guidance. In addition to office appointments, I can schedule studio visits and attend lessons, auditions, rehearsals, screenings, exhibits, and performances.
I understand that the conventional "50 minute hour" is sometimes inappropriate for creative individuals, who undergo a shift in brain function as they slip into the collaborative creative flow of the psychotherapy or coaching process.
This shift can require from 5 to 30 minutes, sometimes making a professional hour (50 minute session) too short to travel through an entire creative cycle. I recommend 90 minute sessions to make our work together more productive.
Occasionally, longer sessions of 3 or 4 hours are appropriate to allow for an extended session of intense work, based on your individual needs and goals.
I have worked with artists who create in many different art media, including - but not limited to - professional artists (painters, sculptors, print makers, metal smiths, weavers, etc.), designers, film makers, actors, script writers, directors, poets, animators, rock musicians, set designers, fiction writers, choreographers, singer songwriters, minimalist composers, art students, and talented children and teens.
For clients traveling from out of town, I offer intensive daily sessions of 4 hours each day, for several consecutive days. I occasionally travel outside of the Seattle metropolitan area to meet with clients. For artists who do not live in the Seattle area or artists who travel frequently, perhaps on tour, video conferencing via Skype is possible.
I am a member of the International Association of Coaching and conform to their ethical standards of practice.
You may contact me by calling 206-588-5278 or using the contact form on this website. Our first session is a free-of-charge "meet and greet."
For additional information, please see:
I look forward to meeting you!
PHOTOGRAPHS (top to bottom)
Carl Hild, figurative sculptor, Anchorage, AK.
Candice Hershman pianist, poet, psychotherapist at Burning Man
Art Festival in Black Rock, NV.
Idrissa Ekandyo, writer, actor, butoh dancer, in Dan Dutton's play,
Cartoonists in Montreal, Canada.
Michael McIntyre, guitarist, member of Marmalade Brigade,
Thank you, friends, for allowing me to use your photographs on this website.