Brushstrokes of comfort

Daryna ZadvirnaAlbany Advertiser
Art therapist Jo Ferrell.
Camera IconArt therapist Jo Ferrell. Credit: Daryna Zadvirna

It is natural to feel stressed or down in these uncertain times.

But a new Albany therapist says putting some paint on a brush could provide comfort and a constructive way to pass the time.

Jo Ferrell has brought her Art Shed counselling and support service from Brookton to Albany, hoping to help locals heal through creative expression.

“It’s often an easier way for people to express their feelings and issues than talking about them,” she said.

“It helps people face what they’re going through and brings out a lot of subconscious stuff that they may not necessarily understand. And at the same time, the process also helps to take your mind off your worries and helps relieve anxiety.”

In the wake of social distancing advice and self-isolation triggered by the COVID-19 crisis, Ms Ferrell said art was an ideal activity to do alone.

“It’s easy to fall in a slump right now, but if you have to self-isolate, get creative, do something with your hands — it’s the best way to stop your mind from dwelling on your worries,” she said.

Ms Ferrell has been practising art therapy for nearly two decades, having spent much of that time in the UK working with domestic violence victims and kids suffering from trauma.

“Creativity is a really wonderful way to lift your mood, and feel like there’s hope. It’s not all doom and gloom,” she said.

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