Close Menu

    Sep 11, 2015    |   Aidan Millar

Inner Landscapes: Type through Visual Art

As an MBTI® practitioner, I am always fascinated by new ways of exploring, applying, or conversing about type. Since its inception in the 1940s, there have been dozens of ways the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator has been introduced to the individuals, leaders, teams and organizations who benefit from it, and much to my excitement, innovation around presenting preferences is ongoing, due in large part to the creativity and forward-thinking of those who help perpetuate the value of type. In 2007 Sandy McMullen, an artist and MBTI certified coach, unveiled a series of paintings called Inner Landscapes II. With the intention of being a catalyst for conversation between facilitator and client, while tapping into a new medium of personality exploration, the series of 31 dynamic images were entirely based on the Myers-Briggs Type Instrument and Sandy’s Inner Landscapes II collection first went on display in Toronto Ontario, before hitting the pages of a softcover book by the same name.

The inspiration for Sandy’s collection, which includes preference pairs, whole type representations and some facets, was derived from combining her passion for art with her dedication to the insights gained from the MBTI assessment. As a starting point, Sandy began by inviting individuals who were familiar with type to create sketches depicting aspects of the MBTI assessment that they most resonated with. From these sketches, combined with her copious amount of experience with type preferences, Sandy created a series of paintings which she hoped could be used as a creative catalyst for conversation between practitioners and their clients regarding communication and how individuals interact with – or perceive – others. The gallery display of these 31 paintings was so successful in generating engagement and enthusiasm about type that she has continued to use her collection to assist in the self-assessment process with clients, as well as with teams to potently illustrate differences between groups. I wanted to dedicate today’s blog post, and more to follow, on Sandy’s work.

As you look at the paintings and read the descriptions for Extraversion and Introversion, do the images and text resonate for you? Would you add or change anything? We’d love to hear from you!


Picture 016




This painting captures the energy, ‘busyness’ and noise of Extraversion. Its title “Can I Run Something by You?” speaks volumes about how people process out loud. A person with a preference for Extraversion seeks out this external world of people and things to provide them with energy and stimulation.


Picture 015




This painting was done as a contrast to the painting that illustrates Extraversion. It was inspired by the comment a person with a preference for Introversion made about ‘eliminating noise from the outside world’.






If you’d like to check out more of Sandy McMullen’s artwork, please visit her website at If you wish to purchase her book, you can find that here. Check back in to see future posts dedicated to exploring type through art; Next time, we’ll be featuring Sandy’s representations of Sensing and Intuition!