I used to joke that I painted to keep myself sane. Turns out that it's more than a bit of hyperbole. Throughout my life I've turned to art to help me process difficult emotions and overwhelming situations.

In my paintings I combine figurative art with colorful symbolism, surrealism, and a bit of dark humor to break down the stigmas of women's mental illness. I lean into the chaos of creating and combine acrylic or watercolor with collage, ink, transfer prints, found objects, and anything else that feels right.

Everything I make is informed by my own mental health struggles but is about the experiences of women universally.  My work picks at expectations put on women from personal, social, and community relationships as well as the ongoing battles for bodily autonomy and rights, the impact of gendered violence, and cultural gender roles that leave few unscathed in influencing who we become and how we experience life.

By continuing to make these topics more visible I hope to help normalize honest representations of mental illness. I believe more exposure and candid conversations need to be had to create change in recognition and support for women who are struggling. The ultimate hope is to influence larger cultural changes to close the gap on women's risk of experiencing mental illnesses.


Lynell Ingram is a mixed-media painter based in Arlington Heights, IL, who earned her BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design.  She worked in design and digital illustration for years before she made the transition to creating fine art, experimenting and teaching herself new techniques of mixed media painting.

15 years spent working in graphic arts allow Lynell to bring a touch of illustrative storytelling to her work. She combines that with figurative painting and mixed media chaos to visually dissect the impact of social influences and culture on women's mental health.

Lynell has most recently exhibited in ‘Windows to the Inside: Expressions of Mental Health,’ with Woman Made Gallery in Chicago, IL, and a solo exhibit of 'The Inspiration Project,' at Prospect Heights Public Library.

View my Artist's CV here.