What is Expressive Arts?

  • Integration of the 5 art disciplines- visual arts, drama, dance/movement, poetry/writing, music/voice/sound
  • Supportive, nurturing environment using low-skill/high sensitivity methods
  • Individual and group art-making experiences that allow every person to be successful
  • Expansion of creativity, sense of play, development of self-expression and communication…
  • Art-making as a means of opening up the possibilities for change, reflecting on both the process and the artwork
  • Improvisation, performance and various art exploration possibilities
  • No previous experience in the arts is necessary!

Expressive Arts Therapy, Coaching, Consulting, Education

The purpose of Expressive Arts is to make art that reflects the conflicts and challenges of life as well as to give voice to life’s celebrations. The art-making process helps to support the various needs of individuals and to bridge those experiences into everyday life.  Expressive Arts can be found in numerous settings including hospitals, non-profit organizations, businesses, public or private schools and in private practice. Expressive Arts Therapy, Coaching, Consulting, or Education sessions can be offered to individuals, families or groups or for purposes such as community workshops and special events.  Expressive Arts services can be provided to children, adolescents and adults.

Amara Burkesmith, MA, REAT

Has an MA in Expressive Arts Therapy with a Concentration in Coaching, Consulting and Education and a Minor in Psychology having trained in San Diego and Switzerland. She is a Registered Expressive Arts Therapist (REAT), additionally working towards REACE, and is a member of the International Expressive Arts Therapy Association (IEATA). Amara has a BA in Dance, is a Certified Language of Dance® (LOD) Specialist, and holds an AA in English/American Sign Language Interpreting (ASL). For over 20 years she has owned her own business and has been developing and directing dance programs for children, teens and adults. She is a dancer, choreographer and teacher. Amara has offered classes and workshops in Expressive Arts, LOD, various dance techniques—ballet, jazz, tap, modern, musical theatre and creative movement, improvisation and hatha yoga. She enjoys studying various art disciplines, dance notation, ASL and Spanish. As an Expressive Arts Educator, Amara has worked in deaf and hard of hearing programs, as well as ESL, GATE and special education classrooms. Amara has been a Master Teaching Artist for the City Moves! program of Young Audiences of San Diego instructing in both in-school and after-school programs for children as well as professional development training for teachers. Currently, as a Registered Expressive Arts Therapist and Educator, she facilitates groups, private sessions, workshops and events working with families through the Epilepsy Foundation of San Diego County.

Click here to meet Amara