About Art and Soul Art Therapy
Art and Soul Art Therapy is a very small private psychotherapy practice on the Connecticut shoreline. Located at 141 Durham Road, Suite 19, in Madison, we are conveniently accessible at the junction of CT route 79 and interstate 95.
We are Masters-level creative clinicians who approach life and therapy from different angles. We blend out-of-the-box thinking with the latest research in treatment techniques. We aim to provide the best of ourselves to our clients by keeping up on the latest research, collaborating with our clients' care teams across professions, and bringing creative and innovative new ideas to the therapy session.
In order to keep fresh, energized and passionate about our work, we each keep an intentionally light case load, thus affording us time for research, creative pursuits, and self care. As such, it is rare that any of our clinicians will see more than 20 clients a week, and those clients receive far more from us than a simple therapy session.
Art and Soul Affiliated Therapists
Briana Benn-Mirandi, LPC, CLAT, ATR-BC, TRD
Licensed Professional Counselor, Clinical Licensed Art Therapist, Board-Certified Registered Art Therapist, Therapeutic Recreation Director
Briana approaches life with a level of "joie de vivre" enjoyed by adults who have never fully "grown up". A founder of ConnectiCon, a multi-genre fan convention, Briana has seen both the industry- and fan sides of pop culture art forms such as animation, film, comics, and gaming. With a love of these art forms, her art styles of choice focus on illustration of a whimsical nature.
Briana's love of art is interwoven into her life, both personally and professionally as an art therapist. She has great success working with children, teens, young adults and creative people of all ages. Her aim is to move therapy as slowly or as quickly as the client is ready to move, in a comforting, supportive environment. She is most at home working with clients wrestling with anxiety, depression, anger issues, trauma, ADHD, and creatives who are in a career rut.
Briana received her master's degree in art therapy from Albertus Magnus College in 2008, and before that, her bachelor's degree in psychology from University of Connecticut in 2003. She holds two licenses with the state of Connecticut; she is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Clinical Licensed Art Therapist. She is also a Registered, Board-Certified Art Therapist through the Art Therapy Credentialing Board. She was trained in hypnotherapy by the Scottish Strategic Life Academy, and was trained in Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution by the Center for Authentic Living.
Therapy Styles: Art Therapy, Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness, Pet Therapy, Nature Therapy, Play Therapy and Games, Existential Therapy, Mindfulness, Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution, Parts Work (Internal Family Systems), Pokemotions, Online Teletherapy
Valerie Drake, LPC, ATR-BC
Licensed Professional Counselor, Board-Certified Registered Art Therapist
Compassionate and guided by both professional experience and an empathetic ear, Valerie utilizes a direct style of therapy, blending dry humor and witty commentary with clients as they process life challenges. She believes that all people are artists, whether they work with paint, fibers or concrete, and she strives to support her clients in mastering their crafts in life, both in and out of the therapy session. Valerie has expertise with a wide range of client populations, including veterans, LGBTQ, addiction, PTSD, and dual diagnoses.
Valerie has earned her master's degree in art therapy from Albertus Magnus College, and prior to that, earned her bachelor's in psychology from Fordham University. She completed her internships at the VA where she later continued her career for 14 years before leaving the government environment to develop her work in private practice. Valerie trained in Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution by the Center for Authentic Living.
Tess Hannafin, LPC, ATR-P
Licensed Professional Counselor; Registered Art Therapist-Pending
Tess works with a wide variety of populations, both individually and in groups, and believes that we can connect with our emotions on a deeper level while learning new outlets of self-expression. Art therapy can be used to get through situations where words may not always be enough.
Tess earned her master's degree in art therapy and counseling from Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT. Prior to that, she earned her bachelor's degree with a major in psychology and a minor in art at Alfred University in upstate New York. trained in Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution by the Center for Authentic Living.
Therapy Styles: Art Therapy, Talk Therapy, Hypnotherapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Parts Work (Internal Family Systems), Pokemotions, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution, Online Teletherapy
Nicole Morra, LPC, ATR
Licensed Professional Counselor; Registered Art Therapist
Nicole has experience with a wide variety of populations including individuals struggling with addiction and other co-existing mental health disorders, at-risk adolescents, individuals with intellectual disabilities, and veterans. Based off her clinical and own personal experience, Nicole believes that self-expression through creativity and communication can lead any individual on their journey toward healing. Nicole’s compassion and empathy allows individuals to feel comfortable and be vulnerable in a therapeutic space.
Nicole received her Masters of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling (MAATC) from Albertus Magnus College in 2018 and prior to that received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology in 2015 from Sacred Heart University. Nicole trained in Brief Solution-Oriented Trauma Resolution by the Center for Authentic Living.
Yvonne Gordon Moser, ATR-P
Pre-Licensed Professional Counselor; Registered Art Therapist-Pending
Artist, Art Therapist, Indie Author and Founder of the Branford Art Center and YMG Wellness LLC, Yvonne Gordon Moser lives in Wallingford with her husband Kelley. She has enjoyed wearing many hats over the years. Art director, curator, teacher and art therapist.
Yvonne currently works with clients from home offering individual and group art therapy. She received her BA in Fine Arts from Connecticut College in 1998 and her Master’s degree in Art Therapy from Albertus Magnus in 2015.
Yvonne is a dedicated mental health professional who began offering creative meditations in the mid 90’s for those recovering from substance use disorders (alcoholism and drug addiction). She realized how healing the process of creating was, and that it helped in other areas also. It seemed to be reducing stress, invoking calm, creating well-being and opening up the space so real progress could be made. That’s why she continues to today, almost 30 years later. This practice and discipline has helped build autonomy, self-confidence, awareness and self-esteem. Using Therapeutic Art techniques and talk therapy with those who experience physical and mental health challenges, Yvonne guides her clients with gentle wisdom. Having much life experience, she wishes to accompany you on your journey, and assist in your growth and healing. Yvonne has worked with clients of all ages and abilities.
You can learn more about Yvonne at https://www.yvonnegordonmoserart.com/
Erin Murphy, CLAT-NY, ATR-BC, CLAT-CT
Licensed Creative Arts Therapist (New York), Clinical Licensed Art Therapist (Connecticut), Board-Certified Registered Art Therapist, Licensed Professional Counselor
Erin is a NY State Licensed Creative Arts Therapist and a Registered Art Therapist, soon to be board-certified under the Art Therapy Credentialing Board. Erin is a Clinical Licensed Art Therapist AND a Licensed Professional counselor in the state of Connecticut. Erin received her master’s degree in art therapy and creativity development from Pratt Institute. Erin’s training at Pratt was rooted in psychoanalytic and psychodynamic theory, primarily attachment and object relations theory. Upon graduating in 2016, Erin has gained experience working in both the psychiatric ED as well as inpatient and outpatient settings, predominantly with individuals who have a history of coexisting mental health disorders and substance use.
Erin believes art therapy can provide a safe space for individuals to deconstruct and process their past to form meaning and move forward. Erin finds great value and significance in meeting each client where they are.
Karen Silva, LMFTA
Pre-Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
With over 15 years of clergy counseling, and 2 years outpatient work, Karen facilitates safe exploration of thoughts and feelings into underlying causes of challenges for individuals, couples, and families.
Karen is a compassionate, trauma-informed listener, traveling side by side; pointing out observations based on my own life and parenting experiences, clergy training, and professional degrees.
Karen received her Bachelor's of Arts degree in Communications from the University of Hartford. She has received her Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy from Central Connecticut State University.
Sarah Ferrigno, MFT Candidate
Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Student
Sarah is a graduate student studying marriage and family therapy at Southern Connecticut State University. She has a passion for helping people of all ages use art as a means of expression and self-discovery. Sarah uses internal family systems therapy in order to help clients identify different aspects of themselves and explore their personal needs. Sarah works with individuals, couples, children and families in order to best assist what clients are wanting from therapy. In her free time Sarah loves playing videogames, spending time with animals and crafting with any materials she can find.
Alex Kroudis, MFT Candidate
Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Student
Excited and eager to continue learning, Alex is pursuing her Masters degree in marriage and family therapy at Southern Connecticut State University. She has an undergraduate degree in Psychology and two years experience working with adolescents recovering from eating disorders. She believes that art and creativity are the true language of the soul, and hopes to aid others in expressing themselves through their creative sides.
Alex truly believes that fun and humor are important aspects to incorporate when working with individuals who are seeking to better their lives. She cannot wait to further her knowledge in order to help individuals improve their mental health through self expression and finding self love.
Tiffany Franceschi, CMHC Candidate
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Graduate Student
Tiffany is a graduate student studying Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of Saint Joseph. She has a BA in Psychology and is pursuing her master’s to continue her passion of helping others navigate the challenges in their lives. She believes in fully accepting people where they are at and understanding people are the experts in their own lives. Tiffany loves to use humor and music to embrace self-expression and comfort.
Tiffany believes passionately in inclusion and has great compassion when working with children, the LGBTQI+ community, and embracing neurodiversity. Additionally, Tiffany aspires to advocate better mental health services to underserved communities and demographics.
On her downtime, Tiffany decompresses at home with her three cats; Sophie, Princess, and Cannoli. She enjoys discovering and supporting small businesses throughout the state with friends and family. She seeks to one day complete a food tour throughout Japan.
Maxine Carrion, MAATC Candidate
Art Therapy and Counseling Graduate Student
Maxine is a graduate student studying Art Therapy at Albertus Magnus College. She has her BA in Art from Marywood University; a program that consisted of both psychology and art therapy courses. After graduation she hopes to work in a medical art therapy setting specializing in children, adolescence, and teenagers. Having many years under her belt working with children, Maxine is passionate about bringing clarity, joy, and guidance to younger generations who are hospital-bound or recovering from illness. Children should be out playing in the sun with friends, not worrying about their next treatment or life-saving surgery. By bringing art therapy into this setting, Maxine hopes to lessen the anxiety and tension that is common with hospital stays or constant visitation to outpatient offices.
Being a child at heart, Maxine keeps a little faith, trust, and pixie dust stored away for some magical moments and memories. She believes that you are never too old for a classic Disney film or lessons. With recent Disney films broadening their cultural backgrounds, this is a great, simple tool that can connect individuals with their own backgrounds or even explain to others in a colorful, musical manner.
Recently Maxine has become a new mother, a bride-to-be, as well as a cat-mom. She enjoys watching her daughter continue to grow, capturing as much as possible to create photo albums in her downtime. She enjoys cooking with her fiance, catching up on recent episodes of Law and Order, and having weekly family dinners with her family.
Ciara Alford, Mft Candidate
Marriage and Family Therapy Graduate Student
Following her dream career, Ciara is getting her master's degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at Southern Connecticut State University. They have always believed that art is just another way for someone to connect with themselves and express things beyond what words can say. She loves to work with any age and meet them where they are at to start working on building a better connection within themselves and in the relationships around them. They take a systemic approach to help clients with any areas of their life they want to focus on. Ciara can work with couples, families, individuals, and children.
Ciara always brings her bubbly and compassionate personality into the room to help build a strong alliance with clients. She loves using music and colors to help herself express emotions and in her downtime like to spend time playing video games with her friends. They also like to bake to help make new friends and bring smiles to people's faces. She is excited to be able to work with new communities and embrace the new experiences that lie ahead.
Patricia Lucas, MAATC Candidate
Art Therapy and Counseling Graduate Student
Pat is a graduate student studying Clinical Mental Health Counseling/Art Therapy at Lesley University in Boston MA. She as a BS in Fine Arts/Elementary Education from Russell Sage College, Troy, New York and a MEd in Counseling/Industrial Psychology from Springfield College, in Springfield MA. Pat worked last year at The Children’s Center in Salt Lake City, Utah working with preschool traumatized children using trauma based informed practices and emotional regulation practices. Pat also owns and operates a working art studio for adult women in Park City , Utah.
She has also an extensive corporate career in merger and acquisition and organizational development both national an internationally. Pat has lived and worked in France, Hong Kong, China and Korea. While living Internationally Pat also worked in elementary schools teaching art. Pat wants to continue to work with children using art as an expressive tool to foster communication with mental health issues and those affected by trauma. Pat is passionate about traveling, hiking, snow shoeing and scuba diving along with all forms of art and taking risks with doing things she has never down before.