Category: Art Therapies

How Arts Can Help Make Better Doctors

Healing Art Program

Healing Art Program

A story is told by Lisa Brandt, who knew that she was ailing at the point when she could barely move from her couch to the bed. She was aged 48 years by then and she was feeling a voracious thirst coupled with a chilled bone. A doctor examined her in 2011, when influenza was at an all-time high. After the examination, she was just told to go home and take a rest. Even at the point of having blood in her urine, the medical attendants scolded her and told her to stop taking the case of a flu too far. This case later turned out that Brandt was suffering from sepsis, a life-threatening complex infection that spreads stealthily after doctor’s work on the teeth. A doctor in a walk-in clinic based in London refused to attend to her. She however received some antibiotics at the nick of time hence saving her from a possible death.

Sometimes, patients tend to think that doctors can make out what they are suffering from even without much diagnosis. We imagine that doctors can guess our ailments and treat us just like the case of the brilliant diagnostician on the renowned TV series called House. However, in reality, doctors can only cover a given ground after an appointment period of around 15 minutes.

There is an increasing reliance of tools that save time such as blood tests, checklists for symptoms, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to properly diagnose patients.

Art for Patient

Art for Patient

Even as we experience an age where medicine is embracing technology like it has never had, it is evident that doctors are not being trained at patient’s beds. Instead of this, most of the doctors are now being trained on how to use the super intelligent computer whose success rate is thought to be almost 93%. This is incomparable with the 51% percent success rate for human doctors.

Be that as it may, some doctors are opposed to the move and they insist that medicine should not be seen as just another science, it should be viewed as an art too. These medical professionals argue that education in arts and humanities forms the best remedy to the misguided diagnosis that has been experienced in various doctor’s quarters. The misdiagnosis has led to a stained patient-doctor relationship.

“Every doctor should undergo some training in art since they will have better clinical skills, according to Dr. Caroline Wellbery, a co-author of a research paper on the role of arts in medicine”

[Source: Arts and medicine]

Wellbery indicated that if medical students are taken through the role of shadows and light in painting work, they can gain better awareness on various ways of seeing. Wellbery has unmatched knowledge on the relationship between arts and medicine and she has been contacted by many students to train them. The skills that students gain while observing in arts can be of much help when the students come to a clinic. For example, if a patient complains of digestive problems, the doctor may know the root cause in a better manner if he/she is able to observe various facial expressions that show chronic anxiety and stress.

Art can Alleviate Stress in Patient

The benefits of arts observation are immeasurable. It has been proved that medical students who have been taken through an arts appreciation course for 8 weeks have a better and detailed ability to observe clinical slides that show patients who have diverse disorders. Such medical students cannot be compared to their colleagues who only focus on medical classes.

Moreover, exposure to the language used in arts makes medicine students to have sharp critical communication and thinking skills. A medical student who has gone through a communication course can easily decipher what a patient is suffering from through engaging him/her in leading stories. This is not another touchy-feely idea. A fervent study of the placebo effect indicates that focused care from a medical practitioner prompts faster healing, hence making the patient’s condition improve even without further medical care. Art-based courses should be introduced and made core units in medical schools.

If you visit Yale School of Medicine, you will find that first year students are supposed to attend an arts-observation workshop in a museum that has British paintings of 18th and 19th century.

Art Therapy Through Coffee Painting?

It has been a while since we read about some ideas in coffee painting. Life is more than coffee painting, yes, but let us explore what coffee painting does to the human mind and what therapy it brings. The human life is one complicated one. If there is no consistent therapy to treat the boredom, it is easy that one might fall into the dreaded stress or even into depression. This is the essence of the existence of arts.



Coffee painting is known across the world to be a perfect medium for therapeutic arts. It is an easy and simple way that uses natural pigmentation to create wonderful works of art that are endearing to the soul.

You do not have to spend any minute in boredom. You too, can also create your own work of art through the coffee painting. There are a few steps however that you should pay attention to lest you make something that does appease your spirit.

Step 1: Prepare your materials

Coffee Painting Techniques

Coffee Painting Techniques

You will need several materials and it is critical to have them ready before you begin to do anything.


You will require papers of good quality. A good example of such is the watercolor paper. If you lack such papers, get something whose base is very thick. A sketchpad paper is a perfect example that you can use. This is because you can take it anywhere and it is easy to use.

However, due to its several demerits, it is still recommended that you use the watercolor paper. There are some shops that supply good quality paper that will give you proper service.

Paint brushes

Get a paint brush that is easy and comfortable to use. The arts therapy session is supposed to be a relaxed one and enjoyable. Therefore, you should make sure that your paint brush does not give you stress. Acquire an easy one to use. If possible, get the fine tip paint brushes since they are light to hold and they can help you to create any details that you would need. Better still, get the round tip brush to help in making details and another flat tip brush to cover various areas or to aid in making washes.

Water and coffee

Get the pure black instant coffee. This is not the same as the 3-in-1. Mix the coffee with a little amount of water to have a dark shade of your coffee. Add more water if you are looking to have a light shade. Make use of a scratch paper to ensure that you have the correct shades that you need for your arts therapy session.

Optional items

Add more fun and thrill to your session with some candles or some cool music. The candles and/or music give you a full treat of fun as you paint. You could also do the therapeutic painting in a coffee shop since there is a perfect ambience and plenty of your favorite coffee.

Step 2: Do what you want

Coffee Painting Art

Coffee Painting Art

This is the perfect time for you to create what you want and hence express your feelings. Do not do it wrong, take your time and invest in a perfect work of art that will trigger your emotions and give the therapy that you so much look for. This time, it is only you, your coffee mix, and the paintbrushes. Make it count. Relax and have fun. You are not doing it for anyone. It is all for you. Do it with love and love what you are doing. If you do not have an idea of what to create, start with the image that comes to your mind. Use what your subconscious mind wants to express as opposed to trying to appease someone else. Let your hands free and let them work spontaneously. This is the perfect way to letting the subconscious mind to express what it wants to. You will realize that you are gifted when you let your mind free and your hands do the walking.

You can create anything you want. You will see therapy in your work once you are able to enjoy. The patterns that you draw could be something that you saw in the past, something that is bothering you at present or something that you anticipate will happen after this time. This is one of the easiest ways to tell whether you have dreams and aspirations within you that need to be nurtured. Moreover, arts therapy makes it easy for you to express longings, experiences, emotions, and other issues of life on paper.