Alicia Brown is the founder of The Art Child, LLC in Connecticut. Her unique practice integrates art and therapy. We hope you enjoy this interview!
Coaching Focus: My coaching practice revolves around using art in your everyday life.
Location: Connecticut, USA
Tell us about your journey as a coach.
Teaching children and helping their overall mental well-being is what truly got me started in my Therapeutic Art Coaching Journey.
I began a few years ago, but, in reality, I’ve been doing it my whole life.
My first clients came to me when they saw how hard I worked to get my certification and wanted to be a part of the experience. My business model has not changed very much other than I can now offer group sessions at the Renaissance Faire, and that is amazing!!
Being nominated and awarded the title of Phenomenal Woman in Business 2021 was a huge honor and a milestone in my career.
I work with children (and above) doing art journals and self-expression work to help parents better understand their child and their child’s emotions. I also work with parents to help them better express themselves.
Art can be therapeutic because it doesn’t require you to know what you’re doing. It requires you to relax, and ways to do that are to not think and paint, or smush it around with your fingers or toes—basically to think like a child again.
My absolute favorite thing to do is work with parents and their children in a group because it will force the parent into a “process not product” mindset. We don’t want to tell the child what to do—no, that’s limiting the creativity—but we also don’t want them running off with the paintbrush and painting a library wall. There’s always a happy medium in my class. Yes, we can paint outside! Let’s use ice chalk!? or Watercolor Spray!!
I have combined working with children, working with adults, and working with art materials into a therapeutic art life coaching business, and I’m very proud of it.
What’s a typical art therapy session like?
A typical session with me usually involves me getting you out of your head for a few minutes before I very minimally guide you through a craft or project. My goal in the session is to get you to be more creative with yourself.
I don’t think any of my clients have noticed that I will start the craft with them but then the craft subtly disappears, and we can converse about what they’re thinking.
Sessions are usually done in groups or one-on-one. The progress I like to see is that they go home in a better mindset than when they came in.
Even if they came in with a pretty good mindset, I want them to feel more relaxed and open to change and progress in their everyday life. I want my clients to be able to remember that feeling and channel it when they feel that emotion again.
What programs or certifications have you done? Would you recommend them, and for whom?
I hold a Certificate in Therapeutic Art Life Coaching through Transformation Academy. I also specialize in working with children with Autism.
I would recommend this program for people just wanting to get started, but afterward I recommend keeping up to date on your knowledge. I take a lot of coursework & study my area a lot.
What are your thoughts on “choosing a niche” as a coach?
I love that my niche is art because I can better elaborate on it as a coach because that is what I grew up doing. Finding your niche can take a while if you’re unsure what you’re great at, but asking friends and family is definitely helpful. Or just ask yourself what’s a topic that you can discuss for 20 minutes without any prep.
If you received an extra $10,000 to spend on your business, how would you spend it and why?
I would work on that coloring book, buy a travel trailer so that I can do more in-person events across the United States, and re-invest back into the business with courses and more.
What are some of your favorite affirmations and why?
My motto is Process not Product, and that is what I tell all my students/clients.
When you feel overwhelmed, stressed, or have lost your focus or motivation, what do you do?
I write or draw in a journal. I also take a break and go for a walk in nature.
Do you have any examples of how a “failure” set you up for later success?
I think my failure was selling my own artwork at markets. It only made me realize I’m a better teacher. I love to teach people and helping them make breakthroughs.
If you could put a message on a huge billboard — getting a message out to millions — what would it say and why?
Art is about expression, so let’s turn off our logical minds, and use our creative side.
This article was written by the Life Coach Magazine staff. We cover everything from personal development, to coaching tips, to how to grow your coaching business. Follow us on Instagram or sign up for our emails!