Date of Award

Spring 5-21-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Sarah Hamil


An exploration of combining empowerment theory, photo-based art interventions, and hope-based interventions in a group setting and whether this method can reduce feelings of depression and anxiety and increase feelings of hope, power, and empowerment for those living with chronic conditions and chronic pain. The reviewed literature showed that hope-based art interventions, photo-based art interventions, and empowerment can increase feelings of hope and empowerment and decrease levels of depression and anxiety in people living with chronic conditions. I created a method that combined all three interventions in a group therapy setting where the participants completed the artwork between sessions and shared their work and thoughts surrounding it in the following session. The group took place over zoom through a local creative university. The participants were between the ages of eighteen and twenty-six; all participants were female except for one male who attended one session and were Caucasian, Asian, Asian-American, and Indigenous. I learned that the combination of photo-based interventions, hope based interventions, and empowerment theory in a group setting for people with chronic conditions has the potential to lower feelings of depression and anxiety and with further research in a group with more consistent attendance, has the potential to increase feelings of hope, purpose, and empowerment. This research highlighted the need for more exploration into successful expressive therapy measures that support people with chronic conditions through empowerment, art, advocacy, and community.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.




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