Date of Award

Spring 2020

Access Restriction

Research Projects

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Marital and Family Therapy

School or College

College of Communication and Fine Arts

First Advisor

Jessica Bianchi


This study looks at the effectiveness of digital media to create response art and deepen attunement with adolescent clients as well as develop self-awareness in the therapist. An arts- based qualitative heuristic self-study was used to analyze data gathered over a six-week period. The subject was the researcher/therapist and the data was gathered during the second-year practicum while working with adolescents at a non-public school. Data was gathered through a process of creating two post-session response artworks using video, animation, or digital drawing and a written reflection for each artwork. Nine artworks and eight written reflections were created in total. The data was analyzed using a phenomenological lens and a digital art therapy lens. Certain themes, such as use of color, rhythm and pace, self as subject, client process, progression of affect, management of environment, and representation of containment were analyzed. These themes revealed a high probability for digital media to assist in deepening attunement with an adolescent client and a more limited chance of development of self- awareness.