(Self Study, 1.5 CEs) Journey Through the Tree of Life

Susan Leopold, RP, RSW, MSW, Registered Creative Art Therapist, ATR, MA, MPS,

This self-study course is worth 1.5 continuing education contact hour for LCATs in New York state.


Using found objects, collage, writing, and dialoguing with creations to process and transform grief/loss and promote healing. Active engagement in art making regulates feelings of anxiety, depression and hopelessness via an intermodal use of visual art and writing, transforming and giving words to previously unformulated experiences in relation to grief and/or other overwhelming emotions.


1) Participants will be able to identify distinction between grief and complicated grief.

2) Participants will be able to identify 2 creative arts therapies interventions that would benefit clients struggling with grief/loss.

3) Participants will be able to articulate rationale for and against the use of unstructured versus structured approach/interventions with clients.

I am an award winning visual artist and illustrator, author, educator and Registered Creative Art Psychotherapist and Clinical Social Worker (RP, ATR, MPS, RSW, MSW). I have been doing this for over a decade. My clinical training includes York University, Catholic Family Services Toronto, Hinks Dellcrest Center for Childrens’ Mental Health, Advance Treatment Clinic (ADHD services) and University Hospital Network (UHN). I am a member of the Children in Limbo Task Force in Toronto. In the summer of 2017 I completed my Master of Social Work at Smith College, became registered and added clinical Social Work to my private psychotherapy practice. In addition to my passion for art making and creativity, my other interests focus on Children and Family Mental Health and improving developmental outcomes for Children and Youth in the Child Welfare System. I am a board member of the Children in Limbo Task Force in Toronto and was part of the Known Donor Research Team as part of my graduate thesis for Smith College School for Social Work. My commissioned art has appeared on the covers and inside of numerous publications. In terms of clinical publications, I co-authored Complicated Grief, Attachment and Art Therapy: Theory, Treatment and 14 Ready-to-Use Protocols published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. Previously I was an invited speaker at the OACCPP Annual Conference and presented a workshop on Trauma and Art Therapy. I maintain a private art therapy studio in Toronto, working relationally with clients, using a variety of creative approaches such as: creative arts therapy, play therapy, sand and other expressive arts therapies. I work with adults as well as latency age children and adolescents who struggle with issues related to a history of trauma, depression, anxiety, romantic problems, body image, existential/spiritual crises, attachment issues, and complicated grief.

A reminder about self-study and continuing education:

For LCATs in New York State, a self-study course can only equal 1/3 of the required contact hours for your license renewal. So, if your license renews in three years, you will require 36 continuing education contact hours, thus a maximum of 12 of those hours can be self-study. The rest of your contact hours must be live events. This includes online webinars, which CreativeArtsTherapiesOnline.com will be offering on a monthly basis, starting in February of 2017. All enrolled students will be updated on new live and self-study course launches. So keep an eye out for our newsletter!

If you have any problems or technical difficulties, please contact Briana MacWilliam at support@CreativeArtsTherapiesOnline.com.

Briana MacWilliam, Inc. is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed creative arts therapists #CAT-0014.

Course Curriculum

  Presentation Lecture
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Course Materials
Available in days
days after you enroll

Your Instructor

Briana MacWilliam MPS, ATR-BC, LCAT
Briana MacWilliam MPS, ATR-BC, LCAT

Briana MacWilliam has over 15 years of clinical experience as a creative arts therapist, and is the Founder and Director of CreativeArtsTherapiesOnline.com. She has held two directorial positions in community-based and day-treatment settings, and was a research outcomes coordinator for four years, at the Amen Clinics, Inc.—a brain research and diagnostic facility. She has also edited and co-authored two books on the subjects of attachment and complicated grief, and working with LGBTQ populations. Currently, she offers psychoeducation in self help and personal development through BrianaMacWilliam.com, and continuing education for practitioners through CreativeArtsTherapiesOnline.com. She is also a thesis advisor for Pratt Institute's Creative Arts Therapies Department, and maintains a small private practice.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I attend a live event online?
Each month we will send out reminders and notifications by email, for the upcoming live presentations. If you would like to attend you will need to purchase the individual course that will give you access to the evaluation and learning assessment, which will trigger your certificate. After your purchase, you will be given a special link that allows you to register for the live event itself. A live event online counts the same as an in-person event (according to the New York State Office of Professions), because the presenters are available to answer questions in real time. If you belong to our membership program, on a monthly basis, you will receive a direct link that allows you to join the live presentations for free. So keep an eye on your email!
How will I receive the certificate?
Certificates are automatically generated after you have taken an online assessment and course evaluation, and sent to the email you used to enroll in the program.
Do you keep track of my hours?
Yes. Once you enroll in the school (whether it is through our membership program or for purchasing an individual course) a personal dashboard is created for you through "myTeachable." With your username and login, you can always come back to your dashboard, which keeps track of all your courses and contact hours.
How does the membership program work?
After you sign up for a subscription, you will receive unlimited access to a library of self-studies, as well as free registration to our monthly, live event continuing education presentations. Each month, the recordings of the live presentations are added to the library as self-studies. So, the library is always growing with new content, and you never miss a presentation.
What if I have more questions?
Contact us at [email protected], and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Briana MacWilliam, Inc. is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed creative arts therapists #CAT-0014.

This course is closed for enrollment.