Children, Grief + Creativity

Do children grieve differently from adults? What are the best ways to support children through a bereavement? How can creativity and Art Therapy help children express and process their thoughts and feelings?

Join psychotherapist Julia Samuel MBE, Art Therapist Victoria Tolchard, animator and widower Gary Andrews, and academic Lesel Dawson to discuss these questions. The panel will offer practical advice on how to support bereaved children and explore the benefits of creative expression and Art Therapy, suggesting that drawing, sculpting, and other creative activities can free up feelings and memories and help grieving children connect to their emotions and tell their stories.

As part of this discussion, the panel will launch two short Brigstow-funded films they have created together. ‘Children, Grief and Creativity’ is an animation which brings together Julia’s wisdom, Lesel’s research and Gary’s beautiful drawings and personal experience to present some key messages about children’s grief and the therapeutic potential of creativity. ‘Children, Grief and Art Therapy’ is a collaboration between Victoria, Lesel and Gary which gives an overview of Victoria’s Art Therapy practice, featuring examples of children’s artwork.

This session was originally held on 2 May 2022 as part of Dying Matters week.


Dr Lesel Dawson

Julia Samuel MBE

Facilitator Gary Andrews (c) Noelle Vaughn Photography

Gary Andrews

Victoria Tolchard

Victoria Tolchard