This is the second in a series where I am interviewing Art Therapists, people with Art Therapy degrees, even Art Therapy students, and sharing them here with you! This is really for the benefit of students and future students of Art Therapy. The folks I am talking to are all in different career stages and have diverse careers.
I hope these questions and answers shed some light on questions you have, and get you even more excited about your future as an art therapist.
If you have other questions you would like me to ask as I do these interviews please email me and I’ll work ‘em in!
I also hope that some of you established Art Therapists enjoy these. If you are interested in doing an interview contact me.
Today we are talking to Jen Price Davis
1. Describe yourself in 5 words.
spicy, creative, loving, funny, observant
2. What are you passionate about? This can be work-related, personal, whatever you would like to share.
I’m passionate about my family, being kind, laughing, and doing life my way as much as possible. In turn, I want to help others live a life that fits their values. I’m really partial to people who have a desire to create a life and career around their creativity.
3. What stage of this career are you in?
In my day time work, I am a career counselor; I don’t know that there is a stage for that. I’ve been doing it for four years, but I’ve been in higher ed for eight years so I have a bit of seasoning at this point. As a career counselor, my role is to assist student in the whole process of career development from self-awareness through resume writing, preparing for interviews, etc. I feel fortunate to meet and work with our future professionals.
My personal work as a consultant to creatives who want to build their online presence is new, but it comes out of about 7 years of selling my own work on and offline. So again, it’s hard to pick a definitive stage. I feel like I’m in a stage of evolution…everything I’ve done is making sense and I’m in love with the work.
4. What advice do you have for people who are interested in becoming art therapists?
A. Go for it! I loved my program. It was intense, enlightening, affirming, and really prepared me for my current direction. I recommend researching programs and getting a good sense of career opportunities in the areas where you are considering.
B. A lot of us go into counseling type professions for the love of helping people. That rocks, but you also have to make sure you’re networking and being intentional about seeking experiences that will get you to your end goal. Own your career!
5. How did you decide to become an art therapist?
My mom told me about it. I had quit several grad programs because I wasn’t ready and they weren’t the right fit, but I knew I wanted an advanced degree. Art therapy is a blend of art, psychology (my undergrad degree) and helping people so it was perfect for me. About half way through, I took a course around career and lifestyle choices. It was then that I knew that I wanted to do career counseling. I don’t use art in my career counseling work, but the curriculum still prepared me well and in a way that I learned best.
6. What is one thing you wish you knew then, that you do know now, that you could share with us as students studying art therapy?
Have a sense of where you’re going. I had a fabulous program, with great guidance, but no one can have your vision for you. Envision where you want to be, how you see yourself in the future, and go after that. I’m reiterating an earlier point, but it’s *that* important in my book.
7. What are some other things or people that inspire/motivate you?
Everything around me inspires me…birds, wind, couples talking in the grocery store, babies crying, my son saying “Hi mommy” when he wakes up, chartreuse leaves and deep red berries make me really love nature…Everything inspires me.
In terms of people…Frida Khalo, Ellen Degeneres, my family, Debbie Allen, Chaka Kahn, Degas, artists whose names I might not know, but their work makes me want to cry. There are a ton of bloggers who inspire me too. I think people are amazing — we have all survived something. We’re all loved by someone. We’ve all done stuff we’d like to never talk about and we have something we’re proud of. We carry so much that others never see…I am inspired by that.
8. Where on the World Wide Web can we learn more about you?
facebook search: A custom built life