Art therapist Tia Plieman offers the Create And Transform programme for personal growth

If you were to walk into the Apparao Galleries on the third Sunday of a month, you would find yourself in the midst of people trying to find themselves through drawing, painting, mixed media, collage-making or journaling. It’d be a session of Create And Transform — a community art therapy programme conducted by Tia Pleiman. The first session was held recently.

Get creative

Tia, who hails from the U.S., has been living in India since 2007. She is an artist and art therapist, with a degree in both Psychology and Fine Art, and a Masters in Creative Arts Therapies. Having been ‘traumatised’ by art teachers during her public school education, she wanted her work to be something that would facilitate creativity instead of merely copying something.

Her work spans two main areas — one in the educational setting with kids from mainstream as well as those with special needs, and the other is the community wellness programme with adults. Her facilitation is cross-cultural, focussing on self-expression, reflection and creative exploration. Her work also delves into interpersonal communication building, individual and group empowerment.

Her Create And Transform programme is designed for adults from all walks of life. It is a studio-based art therapy that strives to facilitate self-discovery and personal growth through art. The therapy involves creating art, and is followed by journaling and sharing with the group. This helps in processing what one has created and thereby helping with the process of self-discovery and personal growth. It looks to help the likes of engineers and corporate employees (whose work requires them to mainly use their left brain) to employ their right brain. The activities are designed to stimulate creativity, creative decision making and problem-solving abilities, and help with creative therapy.

In the first session, Tia engaged the participants in activities such as squiggle art, colour exploration, self-portrait and Mandala art for individual self-expression and later worked on a group activity that involved collaboration with every member in the group to create a piece of art.

Each session is planned out to be a completely different journey. Tia plans to use water colours, doll-making and other art activities in the coming sessions.

The next session of Create and Transform will take place on the June 16. For details, visit