What is "Photo-Therapy?"

Updated: May 29

It's not what you think; take a look!


Hi, I'm Julie. Welcome to my website and my first Blog.


When I was a little girl, I wanted to grow up and become a photographer; I also wanted to be a psychologist. Then again, there was a year that I was certain I wanted to become an airline pilot! Happy to say, my prior fear of heights, steered me in the direction my soul was pulling.

After college and grad school, I learned that I could combine my fascination with human behavior and my passion to create images behind the lens of a camera. My epiphany occurred in a single moment when I realized "its all part of something larger, and I can do this!"

Let me share how interrelated psychology is with photography with a quote that sums it up.

LIFE is like a CAMERA

FOCUS on what's important

CAPTURE the good times

DEVELOP from the NEGATIVES

Utilize REFLECTION

And if things don't work out

just take another

SHOT.


I was the rare 8-year-old who loved to be in the 'dark room;' it was not a scary place. I spent a great deal of time learning to develop 35mm images I created. I began to realize that photography meant much more to me than just a beautiful shot. The art of photography is personal and anyone who has taken up the hobby at some point becomes aware of how differently one image can be interpreted by others. Of course, it does document what the camera aims at but it is perceived by and given meaning by, the person who created the image.

To quote Judy Weiser, "all photos we take are in some way, self-portraits; expressions of the conscious and unconscious self, moments of importance chosen for whatever personal reasons to be frozen in time."


By nature of setting up a shot; one must be present in the moment, be in the now, their feet steady on the ground. One must be still, breathing slowed (reducing hand shake) and for that moment..... nothing else matters.

Nature has so much to offer us. Its beauty is transformational. As photographers, we are naturally observant people. I often see shadows of hearts or flowers across the sidewalk made by other objects outside.

What I term "Photo-Therapy" is a way of bringing myself back into the moment, the current moment, thererby not allowing anxiety to "take me elsewhere." It encourages me to become aware of my breathing. When we are 'in the now' we cannot feel depressed (past memories) and we cannot feel anxious (future worries). I'm not claiming that it's easy!


The act of taking a walk or a leisure-drive with my camera has become my way to unwind and relax either after a difficult day or whenever possible. It's a gentle push to be alone with nature, to see things that others most likely pass right on by for a variety of reasons.


Photography has been a GIFT. It helps me understand how I feel and encourages me to heal...


Stay tuned for more of my own photography and what's behind it, for me.


perception

perspective

progression

Contact

550 SE 6th Avenue Suite 200, Delray Beach, FL 33483

Tel: 561.264.3246

julie@jstarktherapy.com

Teletherapy

Affiliations

  • Academy of Cognitive Therapy (ACT)

  • American Psychological Association (APA)

  • Institute of Trial-Based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TBCT)

  • National Association of Social Workers (NASW)

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness

  • Psychology Today Contributor

Copyright © 2020 Julie Stark, LCSW.  All rights reserved.