NorthShore University HealthSystem February Blog:
February 10, 2020: Donna Bliss Interview with Carol Austin, PHD Clinical Psychology, TACHP Faculty “Your Brain Your Art”
Carol is an artist and psychologist who works with her students to explore the unique relationship between creativity and the brain. Described as “mind blowing”, this class stimulates creativity, stretch the mind, and help overcome blocks to understand how we think and process information. Carol also focuses on exploration and personal discovery and to foster cooperative group processing and sharing.
Donna: “Carol, tell us about the impact of creativity on our brain and general outlook on life.”
Carol: This class, “Your Brain Your Art” aims to help everyone think and process information. For example a Left Brain person processes one way, and a Right Brain student processes their way, both can use creativity to slow the aging process”.
Donna: That is intriguing, we all want to stay young and vibrant. Can you explain how that works?”
Carol: Trying new things stimulates the brain function, enhances memory and helps the aging brain. We don’t really forget things, our brains are just on overload, so it take longer to remember. When I deal with aging students I sometime hear, ‘Nothing interests me, I’m complacent, or I need to try something new.’ If your brain is healthy you will try new things.”
Donna: What is the specific link between art and creativity and brain function:”
Carol: Ask yourself how many hours did you spend in school leaning history? How many hours did you spend learning to make decisions, or how much time does it take you to process information? Using that same amount of time being creative will give you insights that will help you in your creative expression, and slow down the aging process.”
Carol Austin teaches, “Your Brain Your Art” at The Art Center Highland Park, and will offer that class for the Spring Session.