For Frank, who was unable to verbalize his feelings about his hospitalization, creating captivating images and displaying them in his hospital room exemplified how important it was that his visual voice be heard. As the doctors, nurses, guests, and other patients commented and inquired about his work, Frank was able to further communicate his distress and to learn to advocate for himself during his hospitalization.
Jun’s work in People Putty clearly revisited this duality. His 3D computer modeling revealed the angry side of Jun that was not visible within the art therapy room. Although he was not ready at that time to face his anger and explore it further, the digital sculpting medium provided the space where it could be safely revealed and reviewed.
In the end, she perfected her use of the paintbrush to create her desired watercolor effect. Her results were beautiful and she eagerly awaited her next visit to the playroom. By relating Ba Dee’s knowledge of and talent with traditional art materials to the computer, I was able to help her overcome her questions about the digital medium and draw her out of the solitude of her journal writing.
After carefully working all afternoon on his image, Dan was happy with the results. He explained how fond memories of spending time with his family in Florida came back to him while he worked and whenever he looked at the image he created. Within the sometimes intrusive and lonely hospital setting, Dan was able to locate and represent a place where he felt comfortable, warm, and safe
While playing and experimenting with the computer, Julian brought up the topic of superheroes. Although commonly
utilized in the hospital setting to help empower the children, Julian’s spontaneous association with the metaphor demonstrated his readiness and need to feel some control over his hospitalization.