Photo-stories from the Psychosis Therapy Project
Generously supported by Richard and Siobhán Coward Foundation.
Arts projects have proved to be hugely valuable to both the PTP caseload and its practitioners. This proposal brought photography within psychotherapy for those experiencing psychosis.
This project was for those interested in storytelling using photography. It was open to practitioners and service users associated with the Psychosis Therapy Project, with a focus on young people from racialised communities.
The therapy we offer is long-term, giving clients time and space to articulate distressing experiences and cultivate robust and enduring solutions. The offering of virtual arts projects at a time when face-to-face had been paused, with clients already very isolated pre-COVID has been hugely valuable. This proposal offered further support for this vulnerable community.
Art therapists and practitioners who volunteered to work within the team gained valuable insights into ways of understanding and working with these individuals.
This project was for those interested in storytelling using photography. It was open to practitioners and service users associated with the Psychosis Therapy Project.
The first PTP story is: ‘Lockdown’
A disposable stills film camera (point and shoot with flash) was sent (week 0) to those patients wanting to participate. These were delivered and returned once exposed, to the service-users’ analyst in pre-paid, pre-addressed envelopes (week 2). Once processed, prints and negatives were returned to the client. The scanned images were retained by the organisers.
The anonymised images were selected by PTP clinical practitioners and this became the visual narrative. This sequence was passed to another practitioner who wrote a short essay to accompany the images. This poetic use of language was incorporated into the presentation (week 6).
The images were also printed and mounted to be displayed at the Islington Mind Hub. A simple slideshow design integrating text, voiceover and images was produced (week 7) for a virtual ‘open’ private view for all to be arranged and the sequence was posted on the PTP and MIND websites (week 8).
A closed supervised discussion group discussed clinical and ethical outcomes.