Art is a powerful means of expression and healing.

CREATE Arts Center’s Art Therapy programs provide individuals the opportunities to work with licensed, professional art therapists to address a variety of cognitive, behavioral, or emotional needs through structured art projects in a supportive, non-institutional environment. Programs are available for children and adults, individually and in groups. CREATE’s art therapists are experienced in supporting both children and adults, and in addressing mental health challenges ranging from autism, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, traumatic brain injury, or loss or trauma as well as personal challenges such as stress, depression, trauma, anxiety, grief, and family relationships.

In art therapy, art is used as a tool to help facilitate the expression of thoughts and emotions. Art therapy works for people with a variety of cognitive, behavioral, or emotional needs.

Download our Art Therapy Brochure »

Examples of the positive results CREATE clients have experienced include:

  • Learning coping skills to handle a variety of situations
  • Gaining a sense of understanding of life circumstances
  • Processing feelings of loneliness or disconnect
  • Increasing mindfulness through art and guided meditation
  • Major life transitions
  • Building a relationship with an autistic child
  • Working through the grieving process
  • Making the parent/child relationship work more smoothly
  • Helping a family work together

The art therapist acts as a guide to help the client through the process of healing and awareness. In addition to guiding in the art-making process, the therapist may provide additional resources and help find strategies to increase an overall sense of well-being.

All people are welcomed and honored at CREATE. We welcome all sexual, spiritual and cultural orientations.

Learn more about CREATE’s art therapists »

To discuss our programs, have any questions, or to schedule an intake interview please contact us at or call 301-588-2787.

Individual Art Therapy

CREATE’s licensed, credentialed and experienced art therapists are available to work with children, adolescents, adults, and families on an individual basis. Depending on the client’s needs, art therapy, talk therapy or a combination of both may be used.

Virtual and in-person therapy are available. 

The individual art therapy rate is $125/hour. Health insurance may cover part of the costs of individual art therapy, however CREATE is not able to take insurance at this time. Please contact your health care provider to determine eligibility.

Contact us at or 301-588-2787 to learn more about ONLINE and ONSITE art therapy options, or to set up a required intake interview (Please note: There is a $50 fee for intake interviews. Parents must accompany minor children to their intake interview.)

Group Art Therapy

Art therapy support groups at CREATE are designed for people with specific shared issues. Art therapy can help with a variety of issues, such as depression, stress, anxiety, and grief, as well as helping to improve self-esteem and emotional regulation.  No art experience is necessary to participate in an art therapy group. Through the introduction of art techniques and materials, CREATE’s licensed art therapists guide group members to discover, clarify and express thoughts and emotions. Doing so in a group setting, especially with those who share similar experiences, allows the group members to support each other while working on their own goals. Group art therapy can be an adjunct to traditional (talk) therapy or as a stand-alone pursuit.

Contact us at or 301-588-2787 to learn more about our current art therapy groups, or to set up a required intake interview (Please note: There is a $50 fee for intake interviews. Parents must accompany minor children to their intake interview.)

Art & Wellness Studios

Join our creative and welcoming Art & Wellness Studio community. Enhance your well-being and health, reinforce and recharge your creativity through art with others who may be experiencing similar life struggles.

CREATE offers two Art & Wellness Studio opportunities for adults – a daytime group and an evening group.

Daytime Studio Program for Adults:

CREATE’s daytime Studio program provides emotional and social support for adults (18+) living with mental health challenges, addiction and other emotional needs, within a safe, supportive and artistic therapeutic community.

Led by a licensed art therapist, a typical Studio session combines talk therapy and individual artistic expression to help people to deal with strong emotions and behaviors, increase self-awareness and self-worth and decrease stress and anxiety.

Each Studio member has the option to work on guided projects or their own personal artwork. Create provides basic art materials.

Studio members may also have an opportunity to publicly display and sell their artwork in CREATE’s onsite Hendel Gallery.

When: Studio meets two times a week (Mondays and Fridays from 10 am to 1 pm) for a 3-hour, in person, open group art therapy session led by a licensed art therapist.

Cost: $75 per session (each session is 3 hours). Reduced fees are available for applicants who qualify for financial hardship.

Contact us at or 301-588-2787 to learn more about our daytime Art & Wellness Studio.

Art & Wellness Evening Group for Adults

Painting, drawing and other art forms are proven to promote health and wellness by helping us to better understand ourselves through creative expression. Led by licensed, Master’s level Art Therapist, Gwendolyn Short, participants will learn mindfulness practices like meditation and breathing exercises while engaging in art-making.

Art is a transformative creative outlet that has powerful effects on our emotional health and our bodies, helping us to relax and get in touch with difficult thoughts and feelings. Participants will gain insight and learn healthy coping skills to address the challenges and stress of daily life.

When: Thursdays, 6:30-8:00pm

Fee per group class: $40 (you only pay for sessions you attend)

If you have questions or would like to register for the Art & Wellness Evening Group, please contact Gwen Short at or 301-588-2787.


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