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On Our Mind: Thoughts from Mark & Michelle Dean

Category Archives: Psychology

The 2016 Expressive Therapies Summit

by Michelle Dean 29-11-2016 | 3:56PDT | Comments (0)

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Mark and Michelle have been teaching in NYC! The 2016 Expressive Therapies Summit was held November 10 – 13 in New York City. This conference addressed the healing arts in art, drama, music, writing, psychodrama, dance, sand and play therapy. This rich format included daylong intensives, master classes, workshops, community events, symposiums, and papers. Mark […]

Printmaking and the Psychological Aspects of the Reflective Process

by Michelle Dean 19-10-2015 | 6:05PDT | Comments (0)

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Printmaking can be a source of fascination and challenge that requires an indirect way of working (Hurwitz & Day, 2001). To create a print is to weave the artist’s experience and perception, insight, and differentiation into one (Neumann, 1974). In order to create a print, something must be done to one substance in order for […]

Art as a Universal Experience: A Dichotomy in Art Expression

by Michelle Dean 01-10-2015 | 9:21PDT | Comments (0)

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Art is a universal process among children in cultures around the world and is something that all adults possess the capacity for into old age. All people may call themselves artists if they create artwork, reserving the term professional artist for those who receive money for their work. Developmentally, there is a universally accepted progression […]

Cultural Considerations of Eating Disorders through Art Therapy

by Michelle Dean 29-06-2015 | 5:03PDT | Comments (0)

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This is an excerpt from the chapter: Dean, M. L. (2013). Cultural Considerations of Eating Disorders Through Art Therapy. (pp. 277-288). In Howie, Prasad and Kristel (Eds), Using Art Therapies with Diverse Populations: Crossing Cultures and Abilities, London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.        While biological, genetic, and psychological factors contribute to the etiology of eating disorders, the influence […]

From the Amulet to the Monument: A Shared Material Spirit

by Michelle Dean 07-04-2015 | 11:37PDT | Comments (1)

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Three-dimensional artwork spans from amulet to monument and despite its scale, it has a similar essence, qualities of architecture and sculpture that share a material spirit. The amulet is a small portable charm worn as protection against evil or insurance of fertility and the monument, a structure permeated with spirit. It is believed that some […]

IAEDP 5th Annual Imagine Me Art Competition: A judge’s perspective

by Michelle Dean 07-02-2015 | 7:07PDT | Comments (3)

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I am delighted to be a part of and share my experience about this year’s competition International Association of Eating Disorders Professionals (IAEDP) 5th Annual Imagine Me Beyond What You See Body Image Mannequin Art Competition and Eating Disorders Awareness Campaign. This, I believe, is my fourth year participating in the event as one of three […]

Art Psychotherapy: Arriving or Departing?

by Michelle Dean 19-01-2015 | 8:46PDT | Comments (0)

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Blog post by Mark Dean, MFA, MA, ATR-BC, LPC I recently received an exit interview from a professional art therapy organization that I had stopped participating in. I had not intended to leave, but simply failed to renew my membership. They wanted to know if they had represented me well. I have hesitated to respond, […]

The Symbolic Expression of Eating Disorders

by Michelle Dean 13-10-2014 | 6:29PDT | Comments (0)

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Have you ever noticed how expensive, haughty cuisine is often associated with sex, the divine, and transcendent experience; and conversely cheap, junk food is equated with addiction, excitement, or an out-of-control behavior? For example, in some conversations with friends, clients, and even in online food reviews the following may be heard: “The apple tarty ice cream […]

Paste Papers: The What For…  

by Michelle Dean 09-10-2014 | 5:48PDT | Comments (2)

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Decorated paste papers, as described in Paste papers: The How To…, may used in a multitude of educational and therapeutic applications. Using the slick and flexible pigments can facilitate abstract and playful imagery as well as lessen anxiety and encourage creative flow (Chilton, 2013). The less structured, or sometimes referred to as regressive elements, inherent […]

Using Art in Psychotherapy

by Michelle Dean 22-07-2014 | 7:53PDT | Comments (6)

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Art in a psychotherapy practice is so much more than a series of directives and ingredients rattled off like a recipe in a cookbook.  Although recipes may get the cook in the kitchen, what separates the novice from a chef is a discerning appreciation of the individual ingredients and their synergetic effects.  Likewise, the ability to […]