2019 ADC Emerging Female Artist of the Year Award
I’ve been inspired to create art since age 5, and the passion to devour and craft multiple art forms is simply in my DNA. I’m moved by nature and memory. Healing waters of the ocean, sweeping prairies of my home-state of Illinois, vast skies and stillness.
The decision seemed to be made when I was born. My parents nurtured my love of art and provided me with every type of lesson from local artists throughout my youth. They encouraged art school and supported every move that brought me closer to living my dream of being a working artist. A 10-year career in design and advertising before diving into full-time fine artistry gave me the backbone to withstand the drastic highs and lows of this life-path.
I’ve been blessed with the rises and falls of the “artist-life tide”. I truly see the highlights as delicious icing and yet the struggles are where I’ve grown most exponentially. I’m proud to have been one of the six original artists who formed the Fine Arts Workshop Atleier under masters Michael David and Thomas Swanston. The mastery, synergy, and discipline significantly changed me as an artist and human being. I’m grateful to have won awards, been juried into exhibitions and sold many works, however my most glowing moments occur while I’m teaching art and helping others find joy and self-love.
The most significant obstacle was also the most gratifying one which enabled me to begin living through art again. After the tragedies of 9/11/01 my advertising freelance career halted. I found myself divorced, raising two babies as a single mother and penniless. I miraculously found an inexpensive art healing group and started to create in an intuitive manner that eventually took the place of my traditional counseling. I also discovered encaustic painting and spent every extra cent on lessons and continuing to “paint my guts out” by following consciousness instead of rules. The supposed obstacle of raising beautiful children alone and broke is actually the gift for which I’m most grateful in life.
My goals are also fairly simple. I will continue to teach various methods of art, healing and self-acceptance as long as I have willing students. I will grow within my practice by learning from masters, novices, children, writers, builders, and stay humble enough to truly listen. I will renew my goals often and include creating SOMETHING everyday. That might be a splatter, representational rendering, meditation and automatic writing, or a beautifully crafted omelet with weird stuff thrown into it! I will continue to volunteer with Paintlove (non-profit) to lead art projects and healing with refugees, victims of sex-trafficking, widows and those in need. I hope to continue to create commissioned artwork for anyone who desires to own a little piece of my eager-to-be-enlightened soul. And if I don’t sell, that’s ok, because my ultimate goal is creating to express my true self.