877.471.5756

Yearly Archive 2014

…lighten up

How amazing is it to witness our emotional realms at work? How astounding is it that a mood can have the power to color our field of vision? Our emotional currents no doubt influence how we see the world as well as how we interpret its events.  Is it not intriguing that one day you can feel so tortured emotionally and then…
Continue reading


Learning to Lose: The Freedom in Failure

Learning to Lose: The Freedom in Failure by Claudia Escareño-Clark Have you ever heard the question, “What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?” A while ago I fell down a self-help/find your passion rabbit hole where questions like these were supposed to somehow propel us into finding our dreams. I would like to…
Continue reading


…of aspects and arrangements accordingly

While contemplating my next performance piece I consider aspects and arrangements accordingly. Like the alchemist, artist and therapist that I am- I must do this! This process comes with it torn shreds of emotional wrapping and pockets of shrouded cloud with which to reconcile. Tiny cast off reflections of myself, like dew drop projections and…
Continue reading


…Exploring the Creative Edge

I invited participant's in our last NMATA (New Mexico Art Therapy Association) workshop to enter the Creative Current and find their personal growing edges. How do you tap in to your artistic flow? What edges do you push up against when it comes to your expression? It is a valuable skill as a therapist to know…
Continue reading


…Archetype : Creatrix…

She waits for you by the river bend, auspiciously watching the rush of water as it folds over itself and unwinds rambling streams of story. This is where inspiration lives, in the synergistic streams of the creative current. It lives in you. It has always lived in you. You are the bubbling ups of this emergent flow.  …
Continue reading


The Give-Away: An Indigenous Abundance Ceremony

The Give-Away Ann Filemyr, Ph.D. Vice President of Academic Affairs & Dean, Southwestern College   In a number of different but related indigenous cultures, there exists the practice some call the Give-Away. This Ceremony is undertaken whenever an individual or family or clan group experiences a sense of great abundance, of plentitude and joy. Then…
Continue reading


Reflections from Old Age, by President Nolan

As I grow older, I grow increasingly less tolerant of intolerance, I grow less patient with impatience, I become a great admirer of Questioners, and decidedly less admiring of those who claim to have Answers, I grow less respectful of rules, and more trusting of rule-breakers; I find Joy more compelling than Trauma, I find…
Continue reading


Transforming Sexual Shame in Ourselves and Others

If you’re considering the Sexuality Certificate program but still aren’t sure, consider how it can open doors for you as a practitioner…and as a sexual being.    Sexual problems are among the most common difficulties not disclosed to therapists (Hook and Andrews, 2005).   Feeling ashamed was the most commonly cited…
Continue reading


Reclaim!

For those of us who create visual art, whether its for self or for others, it's known that pieces get stuck. Sometimes I will return to a painting or a drawing years later and finish it. Sometimes though, I can't move any further with a piece, and it needs to leave my space, to make…
Continue reading


A Newbie Art Therapist Reflects on the AATA Conference

This year the American Art Therapy Association held their 45th annual conference in San Antonio, Texas.   As a budding art therapist, I decided to take the opportunity to attend my first official art therapy conference, located an hour and half from where I live in Austin, Texas.      In retrospect, I am amazed…
Continue reading


Can Art Therapists Change Into Performance Artists…and back again?

If psychology is the study of the soul then therapy becomes a process of healing by which we utilize our understanding of soul or, perhaps more accurately, we attempt to understand the soul and in the process, reveal some helpful insights along life's journey. Exploring these depths requires more than just talk, especially when soul's first language is art; whether that be visual,…
Continue reading


Art Therapists are Artists…and alchemists

An art therapist knows that art-making facilitates transformation within the client/artist. Art therapists know that art can serve as a solvent, a catalyst, a salve, a stepping stone or a philosopher's stone depending on the needs of the artist. In this way an art therapist is also an alchemist practicing the ancient arts of metaphysical transformation. Art-making is an…
Continue reading


My Research on Spiritual Awakening

In the summer of 2014, I took "Foundations in Human Science Research" with Michael Schwab at Southwestern College. As part of this class, I wrote a research paper on spiritual awakening. This paper was based on 10 years of personal experience exploring spiritual awakening (through meditation and other forms of spiritual practice) from 2004 to…
Continue reading


Four Mandalas from Archetypal Psychology Class

In the spring of 2014, I took "Archetypal Psychology" with Heather Wulfers at Southwestern College. I was a bit intimidated about taking this class. Of all the classes I'd taken at Southwestern, this was the subject I'd had the least experience with, and I wasn't sure exactly what to expect. I had a feeling this…
Continue reading


…an integral line of light

There is a fresh light beckoning, breaking, brimming with integrity. It stands there. I stand here. Steadfastly still. Burning at the foot of my solitary gill I sing sweet songs of empathy. And she knows where to turn when the lights dim, Down and in To tap the nectar from urchin fin. This kind of…
Continue reading


Outdoor Art Show

  When you come on to campus tomorrow, you will see that art has popped up here and there. There are heads coming out of the ground near the student lounge. There is a nest, made out of skis and tubing behind the main building. And a chair, with feet, waiting to see you. Enjoy the…
Continue reading


Seven Distinctive Features of Southwestern College’s MA in Counseling Program

The Southwestern College Counseling program is fully approved by the Higher Learning Commission, and  offers a number of distinctive advantages over most other clinical programs. 1.  Our holistic, integrative clinical curriculum combines current evidence-based practices in the field with exposure to alternative and indigenous healing perspectives, traditions and ceremony, for a true multicultural flavor and training experience.   …
Continue reading


…art as transcendent function

Here is an example of an effective art therapy directive for someone struggling to decide between two things. We are all familiar with this position: opposing directions are presented to us and we are unsure which way to go. Between a rock and a hard place. We wonder where to place our energies and how to move forward…
Continue reading


The Reality About Art Therapy Master’s Degrees

by Dr. James Michael Nolan, President, Southwestern College Here it is, uncharacteristically succinctly from me: If you get a STRICTLY Art Therapy Master's degree, you MUST know that only 4 states (Mississippi, Kentucky, New Mexico, and Maryland) license Art Therapists as Art Therapists. That shocks some people, but it is just the way it is.…
Continue reading


Where Psyche and Sex Meet

Our sexual lives - our desires, our behaviors, our fantasies - are intimately connected to psyche. It’s no surprise then that students and therapists have been asking for more. More training. More information. More conversations about sex. Because the truth is even if you don’t have a practice specializing in sexual issues, sex is…
Continue reading


back to top