Today I took a class from Suzie Wolfer, LCSW, based upon the methods outlined in the book SoulCollage. I have seen/leafed through the book before, but never paid much mind to it. It reminds me, in theory, of the personal tarot cards that some people put together. In practice, the collage-making was a little more introspective and linked to journaling. You know that art journaling is my thing, and I found a lot of pleasant connections in this collage/journaling technique. The methods used in "reading" the soul collage cards really seemed to cut right to the heart, which supported the utility of this as a therapeutic art-making tool.
The class was a fairly large group (15 women) but the facilitation was conductive to a group this size, and everything went very smoothly. Suzie uses the Soul Collage in her individual therapy practice and in organizations in the local community. She's teaching (an unrelated class) at Art & Soul here in Portland, but teaches the Soul Collage workshops frequently at First Impression Rubber Stamp store also here in town. She's intuitive and comfortable/comforting, but doesn't over-therapeutize the class- a great blend of support and guidance for this kind of atmosphere.
I am pretty jazzed about this offering because it is closely aligned with what I want to bring to the community (world!) as a tool for healing and growth. It was also wonderful to connect with other women who are exploring their places in this world, have similar struggles, are explorers for truth and identity. I would absolutely recommend this course and instructor to anyone who has the opportunity to join in one of the workshops. Handouts were professional and useful, and the class time was very well structured and organized. (Suzie mentioned that she is setting up regular gatherings to explore Soul Collage in her SE Portland office, sounds like a great opportunity.)
Here is one of the cards I did in class, and the (loosely) guided writing assignment that went along with it. I dictated as a partner recorded the following:
I am the One who is seeking out my journey. I am the One who is curious about my past, going back centuries, and carries that history with me. I am the One who looks on the horizon and sees no boundaries; everything is still open to me. I am the One who has much left to learn. I can approach my future calmly; there is no rush. I am the One who has much to learn from children, and who wants to stay connected to my son. I am the One who wants to look at things without assigning expectations and making assumptions about how they should turn out. I am the One who is open to opportunities. I am the One who looks outside expected, and considers what appears beyond assigned boundaries.