Psychotherapist

Kristina 300x253Philosophy and Values

…to understand, to explore, to grow - one’s self, one’s relationships, one’s world…

Therapy helps us grow an understanding of ourselves, examine the various parts of our identity, reflect on our values and beliefs, and explore the relationships that have shaped us. I believe that this happens when safety and trust are established in the therapeutic relationship.

My therapy practice is driven by a desire to share new forms of expression, build meaningful connections, and facilitate social change. I am dedicated to working with marginalized populations and examining the power of difference and diversity within one’s self and culture. I strive to establish a trusting relationship with each individual and create a safe space for personal reflection and growth. I value the creative process as a source of expression, insight, and healing that can be incorporated into the action of change.

Training and Experience

I received my Master of Arts in Art Therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2010. During my graduate training, I facilitated art therapy groups and individual sessions for adults diagnosed with severe mental illness. In this position, I learned how to integrate verbal and creative forms of expression into the treatment process, tailoring my approach to meet the individual’s or group’s needs. I gained substantial experience working with a wide spectrum of presenting issues and witnessed the effectiveness of creative expression in treating severe mental illness.

I spent the next 4 years of my career providing home-based art therapy to pregnant and parenting adolescents and their families. I worked with several agencies, gaining clinical experience with diverse cultures, family systems, and communities. The clients I worked with often presented with severe histories of trauma, child welfare involvement, homelessness, discrimination, attachment issues, identity confusion, and relationship difficulties. Providing home-based therapy, I developed significant skills in assessing safety, establishing boundaries, and meeting my clients “where they are”. I learned to utilize the creative process as a tool for identity exploration and to enhance parent-child bonding. Through this work, I solidified an approach to therapy that utilizes the strengths of the individual I’m working with and the therapeutic relationship as sources of support and means for change.

Throughout my clinical training and experience, I have been continuously inspired by my clients’ stories of resiliency. This has fueled the energy, creativity, and advocacy that are innate to my practice.

Range of Focus
  • Art Therapy
  • Multicultural Individuals, Couples and Families
  • Trauma Recovery
  • Identity Formation
  • Life Transitions
  • Relationship Challenges
  • Adolescents and Young Adults
  • Depression and Anxiety
  • Mind/Body Relaxation
  • Loss and Separation
  • Attachment Issues
  • Parenting Challenges
  • Self-Esteem and Self-Worth
  • Immigration/Acculturation
  • Affirmative LGBTQ Practice
  • Mindfulness Practice
Psychotherapy

Each individual, couple, and family has a unique story and distinct therapeutic needs. Through developing a relationship based on trust and authenticity, we will work together to explore your story and develop an understanding of how this has contributed to both satisfaction and discontent in various areas of your life. During the course of therapy, I will strive to provide a warm and inviting environment for you to share experiences, creatively examine feelings, laugh, cry, and simply be in the presence of someone else who is listening.

Within the safety of the therapeutic space, I aim to both support and challenge you in examining your vulnerabilities and your strengths as we collaboratively uncover tools you already have and build new ones to guide you toward the growth and change you want to see in your life. Throughout this process you will gain insight into patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, which can contribute to greater self-awareness and ultimately lead you toward self-acceptance and increased self-worth.

As I believe the creative process deepens our connection to ourselves, I may invite you to engage in art making throughout our work together. The act of creating art can be both cathartic and grounding, and reflecting on the art process and product can lead to significant insight that is often unable to be verbalized. Since art making can also evoke insecurities and challenges, my role as an art therapist is to cultivate a safe, supportive, non-judgmental space for you to engage in new forms expression and help guide reflection of your work.

Degrees and Certifications

BA in Psychology and Studio Art – University of California at Santa Barbara, 2007
MA in Art Therapy – The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 2010
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, 2013
Registered Art Therapist, 2013

Office Hours

Tuesday – 8:00am-7:00pm (Downtown)
Wednesday – 9:00am – 9:00pm (Belmont)
Thursday – 9:00am – 9:00pm (Belmont)
Friday – 12:00pm – 6:00pm (Belmont)
Saturday – 9:00am – 4:00pm (Belmont)

*Please call for available times

Contact Information
Contact image

1300 W. Belmont, Suite 400
Chicago, IL 60657

30 N. Michigan Ave, Suite 508
Chicago, IL 60602

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773.880.1310 ext. 7629