Great question... looking back, I think this work has been in me all along, waiting for the right time to emerge.
Nearly two decades ago I studied art and communication studies in college. The plan was to work in marketing but that soon changed when I realized I wanted to help people in a different way, more personally, than such a career would provide. After graduating I set the paintbrush aside for other pursuits: a career in helping and teaching, a family... adventure... but as I wove my story I was always creating, curious to learn about different media (fiber, wood, textiles, anything I could get my hands on, really!). Little did I know, I was refining my skills for what was to come.
In 2018 I jumped at the chance to facilitate a college trip to Alaska with three colleagues, my daughter and about a dozen brave students. Absolute immersion in nature, connecting wholly with such pure places, had an effect on me that awakened my soul in ways I've never experienced. Upon our return I quickly realized that trip opened up a floodgate of creativity... one that has not stopped or slowed down.
At first, I started painting some trees and landscapes, relearning old skills from years ago. Eventually the pull to "make sense of the world" through art and expression nagged at me. That's when "she" showed up on the scene; the figure I often paint, always from the back. In difficult times, I turn to my artistic self and allow my heart and hands to tell my story, sort out emotions, put things in order, or take them apart.
Through this, I learned that art is always, ALWAYS whatever it needs to be in the moment we find ourselves in. It conveys a message when words do no justice to our emotions, to our story. When words aren't enough... there's art.
Amid the pandemic I realized that sharing the creative process and my work with others provided a sense of calm and connection. Oftentimes people say "this piece speaks to me..." or "watching you paint brings me peace." I truly love hearing that because it means that my art (something that comes from my soul) resonated with another beautiful soul. That's pretty darn amazing.
I continue to paint, create, learn new things, appreciate nature and feel immensely grateful for this gift that I've been given. I continue to tell my "story" through paint and brush so to connect with others on a level that reminds us of our reliance on one another, nature, and the human experience we all get to share.
Thanks for checking out my work and reading my story. I hope you enjoy the journey!