Julie Liddle, M.A., ATR
Julie Liddle is a registered art therapist and founder and director of the ART IN HAND® program in Northern Virginia where she has been facilitating parent-child art groups with toddlers and preschoolers for over a decade. Previously, she practiced art therapy for nearly a decade in a school setting, with children and adolescents with a variety of emotional and learning disabilities. Her creativity is fueled by the spontaneity and unselfconsciousness of her young students, who open her eyes every day to the wonders of the world that are right at our fingertips. She does not consider herself an art “teacher” but rather a facilitator who provides the materials, space, and opportunity for little ones to do what comes naturally. Raising two spirited boys with wildly divergent interests and abilities, ages 9 and 12, keeps her busy, challenged, and inspired to keep learning, day after day! Like her grandmother, she swears by the healing power of fresh air, and she finds rejuvenation in long walks, and occasional jogs with her only girl, a 3 year old beagle-mix named Chessie.
Jessica has been facilitating ART IN HAND classes since the Fall of 2011. Her first encounter with the ART IN HAND program was as a parent participant with her youngest son Alex in 2008. New to the area, it was not only a great way to make new friends, but Jessica also found that it was an inviting and non-threatening way to encourage her son to share, take turns, and fully engage in sensory stimulation. Fascinated by the experience, Jessica became committed to incorporating these kinds of creative practices into her children’s daily lives. With her warm bubbly personality and near fearless willingness to take on a challenge, Jessica quickly became the “go to” mom on the block for keeping the neighbor kids happy and entertained. Jessica is a people person who has the ability to connect with children and adults of all ages, as illustrated by the ease with which she has embraced the ART IN HAND philosophy and connected with the parents and children in her classes. Jessica studied art abroad at Belles Artes in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico where she focused on pottery and jewelry making. Her creativity was put on hiatus while she worked as a recruiter for accounting and finance professionals, but the experience certainly helped to hone her people skills. At present, Jessica loves watching her two children, ages 6 and 4, imagine and create, as well as travelling, playing with her dog, cycling, practicing yoga, and laughing out loud with her husband and her friends.