Letao Ma (She/Her)
Tier I Therapist
During our therapeutic journey, I will create a holding environment free of bias and judgment to help you communicate with yourself through your artwork in a safe and relaxed space. The therapeutic relationship in art therapy is a triangle consisting of the client, the art therapist, and the artwork. I view myself as a guide and listener in our sessions, accompanying you to explore your feelings, cope with negative emotions, and accept yourself through your artwork.
Art therapy is not exclusively for skilled artists; it is open to anyone, regardless of their artistic proficiency. Whether you are highly skilled or haven't touched a brush in years, your level of skill will not hinder you from joining me in exploring your inner self and personal experiences through art. It allows you to express and identify repressed or confused emotions, and cope with negative emotions and anxiety in the authentic joy of creating. All you need to do is pick up the materials, paint freely like a child without fear, and feel the healing power embedded in art during the process.
I offer services in English and Mandarin Chinese.
As an international student who arrived in a foreign country during my seventeenth year, I personally experienced culture shock and the challenges of adapting to a new culture. I deeply understand the confusion of identity and the sense of loss that can arise from straddling two cultures. Like many, I have also faced worries about the future amidst all the uncertainty. Through art-making, I will embark on a journey with you to explore the question of "who I am," supporting your adaptation to the new culture and helping you navigate the negative emotions that may arise along the way.
In addition to being an art therapist, I also identify as an artist. I am well-versed and skilled in various mediums and materials, and I continue to create art in my free time. Throughout my artistic journey, I have encountered struggles with perfectionism and self-doubt. However, entering the field of art therapy has allowed me to rediscover the pure joy that art brought me as a child.
I employ a person-centered, humanistic therapeutic approach, recognizing and honoring the individuality of each client and their unique experiences and perspectives. I approach therapy with a neutral attitude, respecting and listening to their experiences, and tailoring therapeutic interventions and art directives to meet their specific needs. Additionally, I incorporate psychodynamic theory to systematically explore clients' past experiences, family backgrounds, and personalities, helping them gain insight into their internal conflicts, traumas, emotions, and behavior patterns. Furthermore, given the inherent nature of the art-making process, I encourage clients to cultivate mindfulness and coping strategies by immersing themselves in a "flow" experience during their creative journey.
Depression, anxiety, emotion regulation, self-exploration, and cross-cultural adjustment
I have extensive experience working with individuals with developmental disabilities, such as autism spectrum disorders, intellectual disabilities, cerebral palsy, and other co-occurring developmental disabilities. I customize art-making processes and interventions to meet the unique needs of each client, aiming to help special populations express themselves through art therapy, foster a sense of empowerment, improve social skills, and explore emotions.
Degree: New York University (NYU)/ MA in Art Therapy ( in process )
Degree: School of Visual Arts/ BFA in Illustration
More about me
I have recently developed an interest in textile art and have been working with crochet and weaving. If you're interested, we can explore the sensory experience and healing power of yarns together during our sessions. While I don't identify as a professional writer, writing has been a personal passion of mine for many years. We can also incorporate creative writing or journaling as a means of expression and exploration in our sessions.