using art in counselling
expressive arts therapy activities in counselling

Expressive Arts Therapy: an Online Weekend Introduction Course

Jill Carter ONLINE via Zoom Meetings. Contact us for dates

This course teaches basic skills using expressive arts activities in counselling or play therapy. It is therefore suitable for everyone working with or interested in working with children, young people and adults.


The course is especially useful for counsellors, psychotherapists and play therapists in schools and private practice. Professionals, students and volunteers from other education/mental health environments are also welcome. You don’t have to be good at art to take part!


Therapeutic art activities are effective with clients of all ages


As an expressive arts therapist, you can really help children, young people and adults. Creativity helps process feelings that talking therapy cannot easily access. This course will introduce easy-to-use art therapy activities and techniques, which will help counsellors and play therapists feel good about integrating art. We will show you creative activities for adults.


We will also help you combat any fears you may have about becoming more creative. Sometimes, it is our own anxiety about picking up a paintbrush that stops clients doing art.


We will help you feel more confident and comfortable about using creative and expressive arts therapy with your clients


Our groups are never more than 10 people. So, there is always one-to-one support and advice Jill Carter has been teaching expressive arts therapy and creative arts to counsellors and play therapists for many years. She will guide you gently through accessible techniques with visual art. For example, we will discuss the equipment and space you need in schools and other counselling environments. In addition, you will also learn practical techniques to encourage clients to draw, paint or use clay. We will also use sandplay, music, breathwork and movement.

therapeutic art activities
Therapeutic Art activities to use with children, young people and adults

There are many simple ways of using therapeutic art activities in counselling. These include using a colouring book, vision board and mandalas. You will soon be using these evidence-based techniques on a day to day basis with clients of all ages. For example, body maps (a client drawing around their body on a large piece of paper) can help dissociated clients. As a result, they can identify sensations in their bodies. Therefore, making the link between colour, shape and emotion.


Arts are especially useful for trauma-informed work with children and young people


Talking therapy cannot reach the youngest parts of us. Creative and somatic work is ‘bottom up therapy’ (Bessel van der Kolk). This means that art can reach the pre-verbal  parts damaged by complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Simple exercises such as colouring patterns to create a collage are an excellent tool.  They allow the vulnerable parts of a client to ‘speak’ in a safe therapeutic environment.


Creativity also helps with so-called negative emotions such as anxiety and depression. Making both colour and black and white images is a useful technique with issues around body image.


therapeutic art activities

Small children instinctively make their mark on the page as a way of creating meaning in their lives. Unfortunately, many of us believe that we can’t draw or we are told that we can’t. So, that natural desire to express our feelings on paper is lost.


You will be drawing and painting on this weekend as a way of connecting to that natural expressiveness. You will also learn how to use techniques like spontaneous drawing. This is quickly drawing an image just after a client has left the room. That image helps you to understand the client’s material and be able to separate it from your own issues. So, this kind of self-supervision is really important in art therapy activities.


You can use art with other creative activity


Art therapy techniques blend especially well with other creative ways of working such as family sculpture. To demonstrate this, we will use music and movement during this course. You will discover ways to integrate art with other forms of creativity such as mindfulness, sandplay and dream work. This will give you the confidence to suggest art therapy projects to children, young people and adults. The course will also teach you a number of evidence-based proven techniques.


When you become more comfortable drawing and painting, your clients will start using art


Contact us for new dates Autumn 2021


10-4pm both days


Cost is from £250 (payment plans available).


This course needs 6 people to go ahead on the planned date. If fewer than 6 we can offer alternative dates, other courses or a full refund.


ONLINE via Zoom Meetings

expressive arts therapy activities mandala

This course is for you if:

  • You are looking for creative Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
  • You work as a counsellor, psychotherapist, clinical psychologist or play therapist
  • Or a professional, student or volunteer in an education/mental health setting, e.g. a school, nursery, CAMHS or with Special Educational Needs
  • Adding creative therapies art therapy appeals to you

The three levels of Therapeutic Art Activities Training:


Have a look at this general overview on why Expressive Art is Therapeutic.

Benefits of this course:

  • Discover a compassionate way of connecting to expressive art
  • Learn how and when to use expressive arts therapy activities with clients
  • Be competent using art as an assessment tool
  • Understand evidence-based ways of showing progress with children, young people and adults
  • Be confident encouraging art as an ongoing part of the therapy
  • Begin to understand the integrative theory and research including Jungian, Transpersonal and Gestalt theorists.
  • Gain an awareness of trauma-informed models
  • Get some interesting, creative BACP and UKCP Continuing Professional Development. We adhere to the BACP Ethical Framework.


Jill Carter is a pioneer of Integrative and Trauma-Informed Sandplay® and Art in the UK. Her courses are the only ones in the country to integrate traditional talking therapies (object relations, Jungian, Gestalt, person-centred and Transpersonal) with creative media such as sandplay, art, meditation, music and movement. The focus is on integrating theory and practice through play, spirituality and self exploration. Her ‘Working Creatively with Trauma’ course is unique in examining and illustrating the most commonly used trauma models through the lens of creative media such as sandplay with an open, compassionate and questioning heart. This makes even the most complex theories accessible to counsellors and psychotherapists working with children, adolescents and adults.

Certified Sandplay Therapy Training Courses Jill Carter


The cost is from £250 (payment plans available).

Get in touch!

Certified Sandplay Therapy Training Courses Jill Carter
If you have any questions or would like to book this course, the best way to get in touch is to email Jill on or call on 07932694779

Sign up for updates and offers!

Sign up to get latest updates and find out when booking opens. The courses are small and limited and sell out fast, so don’t miss out!

The course will give you:

  • All courses can be used for BACP/UKCP Continuing Professional Development
  • You will learn simple, practical ways to encourage children, young people and adults to use art
  • The Introduction will give you the skills you need to confidently use expressive art in therapy
  • You will be able to use art as in supervision  and as part of your own self-care
  • You will feel ready to do the Certificate in Integrative Art

Support and Community:

  • Closed online groups, webinars, podcasts and videos.
  • Group supervision days in Colchester and Ealing

What to do next:

Get in touch!

Certified Sandplay Therapy Training Courses Jill Carter
If you have any questions or would like to book this course, the best way to get in touch is to email Jill on or call on 07932694779

Sign up for updates and offers!

Sign up to get latest updates and find out when booking opens. The courses are small and limited and sell out fast, so don’t miss out!

I was impressed and inspired by Jill’s professionalism. Her handouts are excellent. She has  encyclopedic knowledge. Most of all, I liked the personal qualities that she brings. She has such generosity of spirit and warmth of heart. Also, the pace is gentle yet firm. Her holding of the space is exceptional. After experiencing psychotherapy training in other institutions, I would rate Jill’s approach as masterful and highly competent. The handouts are eloquent and erudite. The symbol collection is second to none. The opportunity to learn experientially as well as via lectures was deeply effective and in my case, life-changing.