Art Therapist, Registered Psychotherapist, and arts-based wellness advocate.
I speak English, Urdu, and Hindi.
College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario. Registration #: 009036
Canadian Art Therapy Association. Membership #: 54102684
Rakshanda Khan (she/her)
MA, DTATI, RP
I am an Art Therapist and Registered Psychotherapist with certifications in Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts and Humanistic Integrative Counselling. I have been advocating for arts based wellness for the past 15 years.
As a therapist, I offer a safe, empathic, and supportive environment for my clients so we can collaborate on new ways for them to thrive in their strength, resilience, creativity, and resourcefulness. I practise from a client-centred, trauma-informed, strengths-based, anti-racist, and anti-oppressive framework that recognizes that we all embody creative potential that we can access for personal growth.
I draw from diverse arts-based practices as I have observed that when clients connect with their inner creative resources, it can become easier to recognize and untangle older, ineffective patterns of being and relating. Creative engagement can help us feel safe, regulated, and attuned with ourselves, and connecting with our imagination allows us to embody new, authentic, more desirable futures.
I believe that comics can be a powerful tool for self expression and healing, and that you don’t have to be a skilled artist to make comics or to benefit from them. In 2020, I conducted research on using comics in online art therapy with Pakistani adolescents, and you can read about it here. For this, I was awarded the Canadian Art Therapy Association Student Research Grant.
My approach is built on collaboration, and a deep reverence for lived experience. I believe that you know yourself best and that you have all the resources you need to thrive. My role is to support you by affirming, strengthening, at times questioning and challenging, so you can uncover for yourself how to align your heart, body, and mind with what is true and authentic to you.
I specialize in:
Abuse, Anger Issues, Depression, Anxiety, Parenting Support, Chronic illness or pain, Self Harm, Burnout, Codependency, Relationship Issues, Grief and loss, Racial/Cultural Identity, Self-Esteem, Social Anxiety, Trauma, Body Image, Life transitions, Learning or Intellectual Disabilities, Developmental Disabilities.
My approach is informed by:
Art Therapy, Person-Centered Therapy, Humanistic Integrative Therapies, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, Attachment Theory, Expressive Art Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, Positive Psychology, Trauma-Informed Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Therapy, Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Internal Family Systems, Narrative Therapy and Strength-based frameworks. I try to approach my work from a decolonizing, anti-oppressive, feminist and social justice lens.
Qualifications, certifications & trainings:
Transforming Trauma with Emotionally Focused Individual Therapy (EFIT) by Sue Johnson & Leanne Campbell | 2023.
IFS Online Circle: Foundations of the IFS Model from The IFS Institute | 2022.
Trauma Informed Expressive Arts Therapy Level One from Trauma-Informed Practices & Expressive Arts Therapy Institute | February, 2021.
Regulating the Traumatized Body and Mind through Expressive Arts: Helping Clients “Come to Their Senses” through Rhythm, Movement, Sound, and Imagery by Cathy Malchiodi | November, 2020.
Expressive Arts Therapy and Traumatic Stress: Innovative and Embodied Approaches in the Age of COVID-19 by Cathy Malchiodi | June, 2020.
CPI Nonviolent Crisis Intervention Training from Crisis Prevention Institute | October, 2021.
Graduate Diploma in Art Therapy from the Toronto Art Therapy Institute | June 2020
Diploma in Humanistic Integrative Counselling from CPPD Counselling School | August 2015
MA Design and Art Direction from Manchester Metropolitan University | September 2004
Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Design from Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture | December 2002
Workshop ‘Invitation to generative pedagogies of health humanities: A workshop on images, texts, and assemblages’, Creating Space 13: Canadian Association for Health Humanities Annual Conference, 2023.
Panel Presentation ‘Telling the story of living through a pandemic’, Graphic Medicine Conference, 2022.
Webinar “Telling the story of living through a pandemic”, Canadian Art Therapy Association Virtual Conference, 2021.
Virtual Panel Presentation “Collective Trauma and Temporal Experiences during the Covid-19 Pandemic”, Comic Studies Society Virtual Conference, August, 2021.
Virtual Presentation ‘Comics in Online Art Therapy with Pakistani Adolescents’, Canadian Art Therapy Association Virtual Conference, 2020.
Virtual Presentation ‘Comics in Online Art Therapy with Pakistani Adolescents’, Flyover Comics Symposium, September, 2020.
Lightning Talk ‘The Psychotherapeutic Benefits of Comics as an Art Therapy Modality with Adolescents’, Graphic Medicine Conference, 2019.
My origin story:
I grew up in Karachi, Pakistan, and immigrated to Canada in 2016 after some years of studying and working in the United Kingdom. Initially starting a career in Advertising and Television Production, I switched to the non-profit sector, pursued further education in Humanistic Integrative Counselling followed by training in Art Therapy. I’m finally on a career path that honors my authentic self and allows me to meaningfully utilize my lived experiences and all the skills and training I have acquired along the way.
Art Therapy combines my love for the creative arts with psychotherapy & nothing makes me happier than supporting clients find joy, meaning, and their own unique voice through creative processes.
Contact me to schedule a free consultation. I’d love to hear from you!