I am developing an art and healing workshop for November 2015. I have been creating art for over 40 years and have always found comfort in making something out of nothing. In fact, I used art to create my way out of my own PTSD; collecting found objects on the beach, at flea markets, and off the street and putting them together in abstract collages. The process of creating helped me to find myself, to heal, and begin to feel whole.
However, while art and healing are my passion, developing and offering a workshop are a new adventure for me.
Here is what I have learned so far:
1. Define your mission to stay on purpose:
My mission is to use art to help others to heal; especially to help trauma survivors to grow out of their trauma and into themselves using creative expression tools.
2. Don’t do it alone – find positive partners to collaborate with; people who get and support your mission:
I am working with Rev. Santa Molina-Marshall, LICSW, who has spent her career helping others to heal and is partnering with me to develop a workshop that will serve your creative healing needs. She will conduct short meditations to set our intentions to begin and end the creative process.
3. Know your audience – who is to benefit from your workshop?
As a survivor of trauma (domestic violence that ended in rape and 24+ years in recovery from addiction—a self-destructive side effect of the PTSD) I want to help other trauma survivors to heal using creative expression tools in order to grow through and past their trauma. You do not need to be an artist, just someone who wants to heal.
4. Pay attention to details:
Passion is powerful and fuels the fire, but attention to detail gets the job done in a positive, efficient, and effective way.
Here are some questions to get you started:
a. How many people do you want to join our workshop? 20 for me.
b. How are you going to find them and market to them? I am going to reach out to readers of my novel, Gift of Desperation, and blog; social media – public and group posts, personal texts and emails…
c. How much time to do you need? I would like at least 3 hours to give participants time to finish creating and take home their completed artwork ready to hang on the wall.
d. Where are you going to hold your workshop? I have feelers out in the community with churches, libraries, and counseling and healing services that have workspaces for rent.
5. Always Follow Thru and Confirm:
One of my main business philosophies is to always follow through; it develops trust and credibility with partners and customers. If I don’t have an answer right away, I will still respond to acknowledge that I received your request and let you know when I can get back to you. Then, I use my cell phone alarm to remind me to find and deliver the answer.
6. Don’t be afraid to ask for help:
In fact, I can use your help. I have three potential titles for my workshop. Which one do you like and why?
a. Nurture Your Garden
b. Grow Your Garden
c. Feed Your Garden