Art psychotherapist Paula Rhymes runs a practice in Uckfield where she offers group and one-to-one therapy sessions.
You can find her spacious, light, and dedicated studio, at The Path, New Olives, in Uckfield High Street.
Paula uses art therapy as a platform to explore emotions and mental health issues creatively, without the focus on the spoken word, and regardless of ability, mental health issues and age.
She told Uckfield News: “It can be particularly useful for those who find speaking tricky or impossible, or for people wishing to use creativity to explore their emotional world.
“You do not need to be good at art, and there is no judgement on an end product.”
Paula says she is a passionate artist who retrained as an art psychotherapist after a career in forensic anthropology, medical illustration and fine art.
She had always been interested in the power of art, and during her time as a Koestler arts mentor working with offenders, in the year prior to release, began looking at supporting mental health issues more deeply through therapy, so started her MA level art psychotherapy training.
Paula set up her practice in 2017 and her experience of working with adults and children brings her into contact with wide ranging issues.
She said: “Sometimes individuals don’t know the source of their struggle or suffering. For others it may be the surfacing of past trauma, or on-going or emerging mental health issues that raise a need for support.
“I work with issues such as trauma, fear, anxiety, abuse, and incest, for example.”
Paula added that art psychotherapy was a powerful form of therapy for both group and one-to-one work.
“My experience includes providing therapy in a children’s hospice, in schools with children, and within an NHS adult learning disabilities team.
“I have a particular interest in working with issues related to grief and bereavement, trauma, such as PTSD, and working with people with autism, and learning disabilities.
“At times, such as with chronic illness, I can travel to people’s homes.”
Paula is fully qualified, DBS registered, fully insured and registered with the HCPC and BAAT, and a Makaton user.
She said: “As a keen and life-long artist, I feel the part that art has to play in our lives is vital, and The Path will be offering life drawing classes (untaught), as well as other events through the year.
“Art psychotherapy is available one-to-one (some evening availability), or as part of a group.
“I am starting a new weekly art psychotherapy group as soon as places are filled.
“If you are interested, or need any information, then please contact me for details.”