Art therapy is the therapeutic use of art making, within a professional relationship, by people who experience illness, trauma, or challenges in living, and by people who seek personal development. Through creating art and reflecting on the art products and processes, people can increase awareness of self and others, cope with symptoms, stress, and traumatic experiences; enhance cognitive abilities; and enjoy the life-affirming pleasures of making art.
Art therapists are professionals trained in both art and therapy. They are knowledgeable about human development, psychological theories, clinical practice, spiritual, multicultural and artistic traditions, and the healing potential of art. They use art in treatment, assessment and research, and provide consultations to allied professionals. Art therapists work with people of all ages: individuals, couples, families, groups, and communities. They provide services, individually and as part of clinical teams, in settings that include mental health, rehabilitation, medical and forensic institutions; community outreach programs; wellness centers; schools; nursing homes; corporate structures; open studios and independent practices.
From the American Art Therapy Association
Jas Milam, ATR/BC
registered art therapist/ board certified
Jas Milam is a working artist and a professional art therapist. She did her undergraduate studies in early childhood development and studio art at Sarah Lawrence College and received her Masters of Art and Art Therapy from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College in 2010. In 2019 she became a Registered Art Therapist (ATR) and was Board Certified (BC) in 2020.
Jas sees children, teens, adults and couples at her studio/office, DAILY PRACTICE and offers group therapy for adults at outpatient facilities and her studio. Her work with children, teens and adults is informed by years of art making, deep Jungian roots and over 30 years of personal recovery. Jas is a supporter of radical self love and Body Positive Living. Special populations that Jas has worked with include mentally ill adults, alcoholics and drug addicts, men and women with eating disorders, relationship addicts, at-risk youth and LGBTQ. She also works with individuals in Third Stage recovery who use art and art making in a Daily Practice.
Jas believes in the healing inherent in the creative process and makes art that draws on both religious and secular imagery. Currently she is making impermanent rock mandalas and crystal grids using rocks, flowers, bones and other finds from Nature. Part of this beautiful art form is the disassembly of the mandalas and grids after photographing them – like the sand mandalas made/destroyed by Buddhist monks for centuries as a kind of prayer or meditation. You may see her other art – paintings, altar art and drawings – as well as photographs of the Daily Mandalas at her Dodds Avenue Studio.
People are People; Love is Love
Art therapy, art, and I do not discriminate based on gender, race, religion, education, disability or sexual preference. I believe all people have an inherent desire to become their best selves and I think art therapy, as an equal opportunity therapy, should be made available to everyone. I have done art therapy with so many different people who all “speak art” whether they are first time painters or experienced artists. Likewise I believe marriage is a right of all. To this end I am an ordained minister and can legally marry couples in the state of Tennessee.
Read more about Jas and her Altar Art in this article of the Pulse