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Friday, July 8, 2016

Portrait Counseling : See Yourself and Love Yourself (some initial thoughts)

Portrait Counseling starts by accepting the ancient idea that we are all connected, that we are all one. Whether that be through a god, the quantum unified field, cosmic consciousness or any other of the myriad way we have discussed all being connected. Accepting that we all harness that which is in everything, allows the patient and counselor to immerse themselves into the sub-conscience, connecting them to that which is all of us.

In Portrait Counseling, like in traditional cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), there is fluid discussion to find repeating patterns of thought that may be in conflict with the desired goals of the client. Portrait Counselling is unique to traditional CBT in that it adds the portrait process to the initial session. Portraiture allows the counselor to focus on the the client while discussing issues or diverging thoughts. This process wholly entangles the artist and the person who they are rendering. During this process there is information shared and the focus and intuitive concentration of the counselor it spelled out within the portrait. During this initial 2 hour session the conversation may ebb and flow over a variety of topics, the whole time bringing the client and counselor closer, understanding and sharing through the intimacy of entanglement.

The counselor, or artist, then trusts that connection allowing them to create during the session. As the discussion flows and the patient shares the counselor allows intuition and spirit to guide them. Although written notes may be taken, the portrait is the primary record of the session. Upon completion of the portrait and the session there is a dialogue about what was create and what ideas get stirred by the portrait. The patient is encouraged to reflect on the portrait over the following days taking notes as to what thoughts arise from the portrait, what may be frustrating or comforting to them. The counselor is given the same task and notes ideas that came up during the process of making the portrait. It is important to understand what information there is for the patient to glean, and what information is solely that of the artist.The relationship between the patient and counselor grows over time and it is important that these portraits not be seen as finished artworks but as bi-products of the work being done.    

The goal of this type of counseling is for there to be a greater understanding of self. Trusting our path, and that we are all on a path contributing to all that is, is a great step to loving deeper. Looking at oneself is not always easy, we are critical and can see past mistakes much clearer than we can see future success. Blame is often a way to divert that which we will eventually take responsibility for, and Portrait Counseling can help ease that transition so that we can more easily stand up for what we want rather than be distracted but what we are told to want.

This processes will not open you to to anything you are already not open to. If you hold beliefs that you no longer want to hold, this process can open a path to letting go of those things you are ready to let go of. Looking at yourself is not easy especially when done from a place of entanglement with another person. When you are alone you can hide from yourself, but when you are seen there is nowhere to hide, and you will find that the instinct to allow and be yourself will overwhelm you, love will be there to hold you, and moving forward will happen when you are ready.  


  1. Your article covers the detailed description about cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), in my opinion CBT helps to manage problems by changing the way we think and behave. It is most commonly used to treat anxiety and depression, but can be useful for other mental and physical health problems.

    1. I agree, and Portrait Counseling, while using CBT, is a great way to look at oneself and see where we are cultivating detrimental thoughts that need changing.