Art therapy student hopes to foster healing

But sees potential in pop art, too

March 2, 2011

If you were a landscape, what would you look like?

It might seem like a silly question to contemplate, but for future art therapist Lindsey Morris it could unlock an otherwise closed door for a patient.

Morris hopes studying art therapy also might open some doors for her.

"I really would love to be able to make it as a fine artist," Morris, 23, a graduate student at Mount Mary College.

And Morris is making her way in that regard, largely as a commissioned artist for Nashville-based Christian pop singer Beckah Shea; Morris has been hired to create the artwork that will complement the stories in a book about the meaning behind Shea's songs.

Until her handicraft can pay the bills, Morris said, art therapy is a practical way to combine her passion for art with her interest in helping others.

It was a career path she discovered after realizing education, her previous default, wasn't quite as personally fulfilling as she had hoped.

"I just really didn't feel like I was able to use all that I have with teaching," Morris said.

One semester into her advanced studies in art therapy, Morris said she feels like offering art as a means of healing - whether that means helping the elderly communicate their feelings through drawings or teaching residents in a halfway house to use art to express themselves in words - might be her calling.

"Art is a way for me to personally be a part of people's lives and make a connection with others. I feel blessed that God has given me the tools to do so, and I am excited to see what the future will bring through my art and art therapy," she said.

So what does Morris' landscape look like?

With so much going on in her life - school, work, a new internship, a recent engagement - the picture is a little unsettled, for now.

"Probably a little stormy up close," Morris said. "But in the distance, you should see the sun shining bright."

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Just the Facts

NAME: Lindsey Morris

AGE: 23




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