My Inspiration & Background
- What is the first memory of wanting to create your art?
I’ve wanted to be an artist since a was a small child. Somewhere, if the paper hasn’t completely deteriorated, I have my first “figurative” work! I recall fighting with my friend Nancy, over art supplies as a five-year-old. We are still friends, and today, we are both fine art college professors. I was fortunate that my mother put me in painting classes art the local art league when I was ten years old. That is where I learned to paint with oil paints. I have had some marvelous mentors along the way. My mother’s friend, Pat Wylie, was a Chicago artist who supported my interests in the arts. I have fond memories of lunches out with my mom and Pat, and being under the age of 10, being a bit bored. Pat would reach into her deep purse to pull out a watercolor set, with pad, brush and a small container of water, for me to create art! Pat encouraged me to enter my first art professional art show.
- What would you be doing if you weren’t making art?
I would be doing what I am doing now, which is teaching art and design. I love being of service to others. It’s exciting to walk into a classroom, to an ongoing debate about the arts! It’s amazing to talk art and see through the student’s eyes that their brains are actively absorbing the information, making it their own.
I learn a lot from my students. Since I began teaching full-time, my personal work has grown so much. I attribute part of this to the questions and comments from my student. So many of them are thirsty to learn about the arts and often come up with perspectives different from my own. That helps me to push my knowledge and horizons as an artist.
I have the privilege to watch some of my students and graduates grow in their art and commercial design. I also see that in the work of my colleagues. In the arts, if you retain an open mind, you will never stop learning.
- What made you choose the mediums and the art styles that you’re exploring now?
For several years I have interested in integrating organic shapes with man-made structures. I breakdown the boundaries between these elements, creating ambiguity. I love to work with bold colors while creating movement through careful color placement.
Currently, I am exploring urban display windows merging the window content with the reflections of the city. Much of the current work is more image-oriented than my prior work, yet there remains a strong sense of bold color and flattened forms.
I do all of my creative work digitally. I take digital photos of, structures and interesting organic forms. Using Photoshop, I combine the photos, then manipulate, merge, add to, and eliminate areas, until I come to the final image. Then I use this completed digital image as a visual reference for paintings. I bounce around, but recently I have been working with acrylics and some mixed media.
- What do you want for yourself as an artist?
I want to continue to grow in my art and creativity. For the first time in my life, I am considering painting on a full-time basis.
- What do you want for your collectors?
I have years for experience. Have shown nationally and hope that if you take the chance to invest in my art, you will both love what you see and see the value in your purchase.
- What is your biggest obstacle in making art?
Time!!! I have the ideas; it’s always about time!