The Art of Play: Ignite Your Imagination to Unlock Insight, Healing, and Joy

The Art of Play: Ignite Your Imagination to Unlock Insight, Healing, and Joy

by Joan Stanford


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781631520303
Publisher: She Writes Press
Publication date: 06/28/2016
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 8.70(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Joan Stanford is a board-certified art therapist and full-time innkeeper who has been facilitating creativity groups for over twenty years encouraging people of all ages, especially non-artists, to expand their awareness through playing with art materials. She has been recognized with the Soroptimist “Making a Difference For Women” award for an art-based curriculum she co-created and taught in local schools. Her poems have been published and her art exhibited. She lives in Mendocino, California with her husband, and offers imagination playshops and creativity retreats at their inn and wellness center. Her website is

Table of Contents

Part 1 Turning Inwards Listening

Introduction The Key: Play 17

Chapter 1 Listening 19

Chapter 2 But I Am Not Creative 21

Chapter 3 My Beginnings 25

Chapter 4 Reclaiming the Child 27

Chapter 5 Materials Don't Matter 29

Chapter 6 But I Have No Time: Meeting Our Resistance 31

Chapter 7 How to Begins: Stop, Look and Listen 43

Chapter 8 How My Life Changed 45

Chapter 9 Expressive Arts Process: Imaginative Play 48

Chapter 10 My Process: Play 56

Chapter 11 Life as Art/Life as Play 59

Part 2 Playing With Imagery: My Life as Raw Material: Poems, Images, Process and Suggestions

Missing 71

I Came Seeking 74

Seven Soul Changes 78

Integration 81

Pedestal 85

Petit Pas 89

The Invisible World 92

Seeing 95

Best Poem 98

Notions on Motions 102

Blue Moon Fantasy 104

Fusion 107

American Airlines 111

The Home Chord or Saying Goodnight to Kate 117

The Runaway Word 123

Return 126

From Where I Am 128

The Singer 134

Empty Nest/Nest Wanting Wings 138

Paprika Seasonings on Summer Greens 141

On Turning Six-"O" 144

Meeting the Crone:

Part 1 Painted Face 147

Part 2 Forest-Wise Woman 149

Part 3 Forest Crone 152

Death by Honey 155

Red 159

Air 163

To the Very Heart/Onion Heart 168

Winter 171

Care and Cleaning Instructions 174

I Am She Who Holds the Moon in Her Belly 178

I AM (CHANT) 181

Poem of Gratitude 184

My Slinky 187

Spring Breathes 189

Whisper/Moon Butterfly 194

Creativity Collage 197

Permissions 200

Footnotes 201

Suggestions for Further Readings 202

Acknowledgments 204

About the Author 205

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The Art of Play: Ignite Your Imagination to Unlock Insight, Healing, and Joy 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Reader_Views More than 1 year ago
Reviewed By Susan Violante for Reader Views (12/16) “The Art of Play” by Joan Stanford reflects the author’s journey within as she consumes her own reality through creative play. This is basically journaling on steroids. Her own experience of self is produced not just through essays or poetry; it is experienced through imagery with her art. Yet the sharing doesn’t stop there. Following each poem-graphic combination the author not only shares the process, she also explains her playtime. The book design is exquisite and filled with color, which makes this book perfect as a coffee table conversation piece. I have seen a few books, which utilize art as a healing tool this year, and am beginning to believe, this will be the journaling of the future. Stanford did an amazing job making this one personal yet welcoming to the ‘non-artistic readers’ through her warming and inspiring candidness as she opens her heart and unique vision of life and the visual world. I felt so welcome to experiment that I actually played with her book by reading it in order first, and then reading her process notes before the poem. Doing so, I was surprised how the same poem gave me a different experience each time. I did this with the “Best Poem,” among others. But my favorite poem was “Seeing.” I also loved how Stanford created a ‘before and after’ chart to visualize what this type of creative playful journal has done for her. Overall, I found “The Art of Play” by Joan Stanford to be inspiring and enlightening, but also entertaining and relaxing. It is truly a five star experience for any audience. I will definitely work some of the concepts of this new journaling trend into my own process going forward!