Art Therapy For Cancer

Promoting healing, creativity and community.

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Art Therapy for Cancer

The role of art therapy in cancer care

Art therapy helps humanize the experience of having a cancer diagnosis and receiving the associated medical treatment. We provide patient centered care, and the opportunity for creative expression. We integrate emotional healing during and after treatment, and promote post-traumatic growth and resilience.

Art therapy can help:

  • Lower stress, provide distraction and increase relaxation
  • Decrease feelings of depression, anxiety and isolation
  • Enhance coping skills, resilience and quality of life
  • Engage the senses to improve the mind-body connection
  • Promote empowerment and a sense of control
  • Increase self-awareness, self-esteem and define and strengthens identity
  • Enhance communication with family, friends and caregivers
  • Address issues related to legacy, mortality, grief and loss.

Art therapy at Legacy

We offer three ways to participate in art therapy:

Classes and groups

  • Weekly virtual groups for mindfulness and art making
  • Weekly Virtual Open Art Studio
  • Other group opportunities available throughout the year. Please check the current Cancer Healing Center schedule for dates and times.

Individual art therapy

  • For Legacy patients and their families at any stage of cancer; pre- and post-surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and after treatment.
  • Conducted via video, phone, or in-person.

Artist In Residence (AIR) program

  • Gives Legacy cancer patients who have used the creative process as part of their healing a place to showcase their art. Displays are in the atrium on the lower level of Building 3 at Good Samaritan Hospital.

Contact us

For current class schedules, visit the Cancer Classes and Groups webpage.

For questions or more information, contact our Art Therapists:

  • Margaret Hartsook ATR-BC, LPC, LCAT. 503-413-8404.
    Locations: Good Samaritan; Salmon Creek.
  • Blair Allen ATR, LPC Intern, LAT. 503-413-8418.
    Locations: Good Samaritan; Mount Hood; Meridian Park.