In this chapter, Anna Sheather sets out her core principles that underpin her practice of coaching with art and introduces her five-stage approach to imaging and facilitating the exploration of a client’s image.

Coaching with art works with the whole client, seeing them as healthy and having all the resources and skills they need to achieve their outcomes. It is experiential, physical and creative with the image itself, providing a safe place for clients to express and hold the whole of what is going on for them.

Coaching with art is client-centred, creating space for self-expression where the client can fully express themselves using their intuition and instincts. It works with the whole, enabling clients to hold complex, paradoxical and conflicting thoughts, feelings, beliefs and experiences within their image. It is a physical process and clients convey their self-expression and emotions through this physicality. It works with flow and uses visual language, the key to unlocking the hidden and accessing a deeper level of awareness and understanding. It always has a clear purpose and intent, ensuring that there are clear coaching boundaries as working with art can go deep and unlock hidden memories and experiences clients may not be ready for.