Polaroid Art Therapy

&&& we’re back!

Sorry for the hiatus but one must prioritize their time when academia beckons. I have completed, presented and defended my final case conceptualization and theoretical orientation! That’s a really annoying way of saying...I am done!!

That chapter of my academic career is over...for now c;

I am currently finishing out my internship with a local therapy organization and was encouraged to fuse my therapy techniques with my love of crafting! It took quite some time, but I have finally implemented Polaroid Art Therapy.

There are many ways a therapist might incorporate art into therapy, so this was fairly simple. Even so, it was just a touch more involved than printing off worksheets from an online art therapy source.

The first art therapy intervention I chose to employ was Inner Self vs Outer Self.

In this activity I wanted to take a Polaroid of the client and then have blank Polaroid transparency (Polaroid frame included) for the client to decorate however they see fit. The Polaroid would serve as their Outer Self and the transparency would serve as the Inner Self.

I prepared the transparencies and gathered most of my crafting supplies.

Preparing the transparencies is as follows:

Use a knife to cut a small layer of the frame off the sides of the Polaroid.

I then cut the bottom back free from the front.

Once the bottom is cut, the two sides are only held together by two small black tabs. I cut these tabs, releasing the layers.

Separate the front and back layer.

Cut the top of the frame to completely release the two layers.

Once the two layers are separated, run warm water over the top layer and rub the emulsion (image) completely away. This might take some time and elbow grease as the emulsion has many, very sticky, layers. Discard the back layer of the Polaroid.

Once the emulsion has been removed, use a damp paper towel to wipe the transparency clean.

For this technique I used Washi tape to connect the transparency to the Polaroid of my client, this way it works as a hinge.

Purple Frame = Inner Self

Floral Frame = Outer Self

What’s in the basket?

-Point and shoot Polaroid camera

-Polaroid 600 Film

-"Ruined" Polaroids -Blank Polaroid Transparencies


-Washi & Regular Tape

-Hot Glue Gun & Glue Stick

-Stamp Set with Ink Pad

-Dried & Pressed Flowers

-Googly Eyes


-Scissors & Box Cutter

I will updated this list as I continue with this technique!

This technique went great!

(I wish i could show you what my client came up with, but, confidentiality,


My client loved it and was so excited to take their work home. My client chose to create their “creative” inner self, but what the inner self represents is entirely up to your client.

I will be trying this technique and adding new ones as the weeks progress. Stop by to see the updates!

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