I am an artist. It took a long time to be able to step fully into that and own it, but I guess I always have been. My journey to here has souvenirs from pastels, pencil drawing, watercolors, jewelry, assemblage, and visual journaling. I can even travel back in time and remember the notebook doodling, outsider art on wooden shake shingles, and torrid romances created and illustrated in my youth. But once I visited mixed media acrylics/collage, I knew I was welcomed home. And while I may visit those old addresses occasionally, I'll probably just end up incorporating their mementos into my latest canvas.
The technical answer to the question "what do you do?" would be mixed media acrylics/collage. But in fact, I'm a visual storyteller. Each canvas I begin has some element to it that is speaking to me and has a story that is meant to be shared with a special someone. Sometimes it might be just one word... sometimes it's a memory, or a visual expression of a meaningful emotion. I'm often amazed at the journey as a piece develops, and it's not uncommon for me to stand back when I know it's finished and say, "Wow! So THAT's what you were trying to say!" I work best when I just allow that voice, wherever it comes from, to speak in its own time and its own way. If I over-think a project at the beginning I'm just buying myself frustration and delaying the inevitable.
I'm primarily self-taught - which means that I have used my tiny bit of obsessive-compulsiveness to hungrily devour anything and everything I can on whatever media has caught my attention. I've taken workshops from both local and international artists, and I maintain a technique and inspiration library to feed me even when my hands can't be busy doing what it is I love.I just love art. And I love sharing about art with other artists and collectors.
I made the decision at the end of last year to take my art a step further than I had, and approach the world of professional artists. While my time is still constrained by the demands of a full-time job as well as being caregiver for my mother and the joys and responsibilities of my marriage and family, I'm hoping to develop a portfolio large enough to begin exploring various outside opportunties, such as art fairs (watch for me at "Art in the Park" in Tulsa, OK), galleries, and online sales. I am gratified that in the short time since my conscious decision to go professional, I've sold 4 large paintings to outside collectors.
When I'm not painting, I'm a wife, mother, daughter, and human-of-choice to my Doxie, Longfellow. I'm a Texan by birth but a happy resident of Oklahoma. And I dream of one day living near a beach where I can paint as much as desire.
What I know is this... I have to paint. There is no longer a choice, it's only a matter of when and for how long each time. An artist forum I participate in has challenged each of us to examine "why we create". And this is what I discovered when I explored my "why"... life is hard, but it's also beautiful. I'm driven by some deep longing in me to try and conceptualize the beautiful so that it can bring joy and peace to those who are also experiencing the hard. I have a mentor who constantly reminds me that "we are changing the world". At first I thought that was a terribly grandiose sentiment to claim. But I've come to believe the truth of it. If only for a moment my painting can remind someone of a time they laughed .... or loved... or were loved... or just enjoyed being, then I've been part of something wonderful and powerful. My art gives my life meaning... and I hope it gives that to you and others as well.
I've had art exhibited in various shows, and have been published in tow books - Incite 3 and Incite 4, and various publications. I'm a member of Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition, National Collage Society, and Arts Alliance of Perkins.When not creating (and even while I am!) I'm a wife, mother, dreamer, travel camper, cancer survivor, and cuddler of 5 fur-babies (3 dogs and 2 cats).
2016 Light Space & Time Online Gallery, "Seascapes", 1st Place Overall
2016 12x12 Exhibit, Amarillo Museum of Art
2016 Art in the Park, Utica Square, Tulsa, OK
2016 Pop-up Gallery "Ground Floor Show" at Flourishes, Stillwater, OK
2016 Stillwater Art Guild Spring Show, Stillwater, OK (3rd place)
2015 Stillwater Art Guild Spring Show, Stillwater, OK (1st, 2nd & 3rd place)
2014 Multi Arts Center Holiday Gift Gallery, Stillwater, OK
2014 Art in the Park, Utica Square, Tulsa, OK
2014 Stillwater Art Guild Show & Sale, Stillwater, OK (1st place, Honorable mention)
2013 Norman Firehouse Art Center Holiday Gallery, Norman, OK
2013 Face-Off Mask Exhibit, Multi Arts Center, Stillwater, OK (2nd place)
2006-2012 - various special exhibits at Multi Arts Center, Stillwater, OK