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Art as a therapy: 4 creative techniques for self care

Have you ever wonder why ordinary people make art? Yes, ordinary people like you or me.

I have learned from my interviews that many of the colorists out there started to color as a form of self-directed Therapy, a way to cope with work-related stress, to go through a divorce, a lost, or to have an outlet to some psychological o physical disorder. Even some professionals artists like Frida Khalo started to paint after an accident.

Well, this is called ART AS A THERAPY.

Art as a therapy is the simple act of using your hands to express your self to decompress after work and to let your feelings flow with a pen or a brush.  It Is the simple act of using your hands to express your self to decompress after work and to let your feelings flow with a pen or a brush.

Art as a therapy is a self-care activity, like exercising.

I started coloring to stay busy but soon discovered that this simple hobby was giving me soo much more. I have acquired:
1. New friends: in “real life” and virtually
2. New skills
3. Patience
4. Self-confidence
5. Time for myself
6. New appreciation for nature and simple things in life
7. A new way to communicate my feelings
7. and last but not least a new business. How cool is that?

Did you notice that I have been talking about art as a therapy and no about art therapy?
At therapy is a “professional” approach about using art as a form of psychological and physical treatment guided by a doctor or a therapist.

“Art therapy involves the use of creative techniques such as drawing, painting, collage, coloring, or sculpting to help people express themselves artistically and examine the psychological and emotional undertones in their art.”

So, are you wondering how to star in the art as a therapy journey?

I started with coloring books, but I have discovered new creative ways to express my self. Today I am making a summary of the techniques I AM USING AT THE MOMENT, but I will be adding more with time because I already have a few things in mind to try!

~This post may contain affiliate links.  If you click one and make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no additional cost to you.~

1. Coloring in coloring books:

My first creative love

Coloring book by Hanna Karlzon colored by me

Coloring in coloring books will always have a place in my heart and my schedule. I LOVE to color, and I have learned and improved a lot.

Here is a list of my favorite artists and coloring books for you to try:
– Hanna Karlzon: Daydreams, Seasons,  Jewelry Box

– Maria Trolle: Twilight garden, Botanicum, Nightfall

– Klara Markova: Tenderful Enchantments, Magical Delights,  Fairy miracles

And also check this list of  resources (youtube channels)  to learn and improve your skills if you feel like given coloring a try:
– DK Designs:   Dominika tutorials are a great source of new techniques.  Her Videos are in real time, and she uses mainly Prismacolors. You should also check my interview with Dominika; she inspires us to pursue our dreams!

– Chris Cheng:  known as Colorvscolors on Instagram, her tutorials are great to start coloring.

– Lauracolorstoo:  She is a great girl!. I love her art; I love her books.  Her coloring techniques and the way she explains what she is doing is just great!

Did I pick your interest? You should you read my inspiration series with interviews of the best colorist out there!

And to explore more colorist check my Instagram account atonofcolors and the people I follow!

Stay tuned for my post in coloring for beginners: what you need to know and have to start coloring. I will have a more extensive list of resources for you to try!.

2. Drawing your own mandalas.

Drawing can be a tricky one for the no artistic type, like me. You need to find your “artistic” voice to know what you want to draw.

So how did I discover what I like to draw? Simple: INSTAGRAM.

I found my self-drawn to a specific type of drawings and decided to give it a try. I m learning by doing and watching artists on Instagram. And now I am experimenting with florals and line drawing, trying to incorporate them into my sketches.

If you feel like drawing your mandalas, read this post with the basics!

Here is the list of my favorite Instagram mandala and illustration artists:

My first love in the mandala world.

She combines Illustrations, zentangle patterns, and mandala patterns.  Her intricate designs are brilliant. I Love her, her little videos, and quotes.

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de [email protected] (@ladyzadzakiya) el



Everything I love in a mandala

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de AARTI AMONKAR (@the_creative_palette) el


Vinita is another mandala Master!

Her account is full of illustrations, doodles, and watercolor pages.

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de Vinita🌸 Mandala,Watercolor Art (@that.crazy.doodler) el




Meni Chatzipanagiotou is an illustrator and graphic designer.

This account is not about mandalas, but you will find beautiful designs and patterns to inspire your drawings.

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de © Meni Chatzipanagiotou 2018 (@menis_art) el


Marina is excellent at traditional and intricate mandalas. She uses watercolor designs to add a twist to her art.

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de Marina Timashkova🌊♓ (@aqua.mandalas) el


An excellent account to follow for traditional and delicate mandala designs.

Ver esta publicación en Instagram

Una publicación compartida de Marta Felicioni (@awsm_arts) el

You can also check my account: atonofdoodles and find new artists to inspire you!

3. Bullet Journal:

Bullet Journal is a system for productivity and organization.

A bullet journal is:

  • a to-do list,
  • a diary,
  • a lifestyle tracker,
  • and a planner
all in one.

Is great for people who love stationery and art because you can combine organization and creativity in one place (like me), but also for people who need to see things in a paper.

If you search bullet journal (BUJO) on Instagram or, you will find lot’s of pretty pages,  drawings, and watercolors, BUT you don’t need to do all that to have a bullet journal. You don’t even have to fallow the bullet journal method and its fancy words. I am doing it my way, filling the pages with the things I need and I want.

A few resources to start doing your BUJO are:

Bullet Journal: This is the official page. You will find lots of information about the system and how to practice it. BUT don’t get discouraged with the fancy names…

Boho Berry: Kara is a Journal enthusiast and has built one of the largest BUJO communities.  On her page, you will find a blog, online courses and different products for your journal. Check her facebook and Instagram page.

Planning Mindfully: Check Rachel’s post  “what is a bullet journal”:  a pretty simple but complete explanation

Sheena of the journal: A blog full of BUJO ideas!. You should read the planner personality post.

4. Watercolor:

Project from Camila Damsbo skillshare class

Watercoloring can be intimidating. It IS intimidating for me, but it’s much fun.

Once you let your inhibitions out, you can enjoy the journey. Remember, we are practicing art as a therapy, so let the feelings flow!.

Like drawing, you will find lots of watercolor techniques to try and learn. I feel comfortable doing galaxies and loose flowers. And I am doing a few classes in Skillshare to learn different techniques and discover my “voice.”

I recommend you to check this classes to start BUT   follow these teachers because they have great courses.

Ana Victoria Calderon Modern Watercolor techniques

Yasmina Creates: anyone can watercolor

Camilla Damsbo watercolor anemones

Following the next invitation, you will get access to two free months of premium membership. Don’t miss this opportunity! Believe me when I say: Skillshare is worth it!.

Ready to try an incorporate art as a self-care therapy in your life? Tell me what are you doing for yourself in the comments!

and….. Don’t forget to subscribe to get updates on the blog.

The post Art as a therapy: 4 creative techniques for self care appeared first on a Ton of Colors.

This post first appeared on Atonofcolors, please read the originial post: here

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Art as a therapy: 4 creative techniques for self care


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