Healing Through Art Making

Earlier this month, I facilitated “Transforming Loss: Altering Photographs.” The candle above holds the intentions of all who participated and shared their losses through talking, writing, and above all, art-making.

The whole afternoon was poignant as we worked together as a supportive group and separately in our own creative bubbles, depicting our losses and hopes and visions. There was a creative silence that could only be described as healing silence as we cut and pasted and glittered our way to understanding our losses.

It was humbling to notice the physical changes in the participants–stiff, nervous bodies turned to relaxed postures and tight apprehensive faces turned to calm soft faces–and to hear the insights and revelations that the art pieces revealed to each person. And I was moved so deeply.

Here are my two pieces from the workshop (lucky me — I got to participate, too!):

A tribute to my dad.
A self-portrait piece as I learn to feel strong again after loss.

I am offering this workshop again due to additional interest. It’s on Saturday, November 28, 1-4pm. Email me if you’d like to join in: cputnam@rising-bird.com.

And the loss issues you bring to the workshop can be any type of loss — not just loss due to the death of a loved one. In the last workshop, there were many different manifestations of loss shared and explored, including loss of relationships, loss of identity, loss of innocence, etc.

If you are a Facebook user, you can become a “fan” of Rising Bird Healing Arts, and once on my page you can view some of the other art pieces from the participants! And here’s a link to some photographs from the last workshop (also on Facebook).


About Courtney Putnam

I first came to healing work through art and writing. Creating collage art and poetry in particular allowed me to deeply understand the benefit of self-expression in the healing process. But, I also began to see the benefit of bodywork (manual work in the form of massage and energywork in the form of Reiki) as keys to unlocking the emotional stresses we hold in our bodies. I became a Reiki practitioner in 2002, received an MFA in Creative Writing in 2003, received my massage license in the spring of 2006, and became a Reiki Master in 2010. In my practice I bring together these three areas -- the body, the mind, and the spirit (or energy body) -- so others may experience profound and positive change in their lives.
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