Throughout my life journey, I have been fortunate to follow many paths; through training and work experience in the arts-music, visual art, craftsmanship, theatre and dance. I am a lifelong student with a thirst for research, travel, and learning, and I believe everyone can learn to create visual art and music.
I started painting and drawing before high school, supported by my parents, and an artist friend of theirs who gave me some pastels and some oil paint. I became somewhat known for my garage door murals where I painted people's dream cars realistically on their garage doors in Southern California. The pictures were featured in the local paper, and found their way to the National Enquirer. I never would have known this, save for a friend of my Grandma's in Michigan who saw the photos and showed her! I thought the photo they used of me was unflattering, and appreciated what celebrities must feel! After attending UC Santa Barbara for two years(Theatre, Music, Inter-collegiate soccer), I transferred and received my undergraduate degree in Dramatic Art from UC Davis, then a Master of Fine Arts in Design for Theatre from UC Irvine. While there, I also studied Musical Theatre. I studied with some awesome individuals: Gabe Keieswirth, Le Strasburg, Dorothy Westra, Gene Chesley, Dan Snyder, Irv Kimber, Clayton Garrison, Al McNiel, to name a few. After several years working in Southern California, and teaching(Orange Coast College), I joined the theatre faculty at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, and served as scenery/lighting designer/technical director for many productions over three years. During this time, I had an active business selling New England watercolors off the walls of several Newport, RI restaurants and clubs, worked as a bartender, and occasional cabaret singer.
I then became a professor at the University of Maryland near Washington, DC, where besides designing scenery, I taught set design, scene painting, history of design, props and stagecraft, in the Department of Theatre. At the same time, and for many years, I kept a busy studio of projects throughout the Washington DC area and the east coast; painted finishes and murals in large commercial spaces, retail and residential venues, museum exhibit work, church ceilings, and other unique projects. As much as the painting work itself, I have enjoyed the collaboration with theatre colleagues, architects, interior designers, construction companies, and clients; and love to see the positive and transformative impact my work has on spaces.
I love teaching, and besides the college level, taught trompe l'oeil at the Smithsonian Resident Associates Program, and part-time music/art/theatre at a small k-8 school.
My greatest commission came when our two daughters were born, and while raising them, I found other ways to use my various life skills . They are now grown with careers; Harley is Miss Oregon 2017 and a graduate of the University of Oregon, currently working in Geneva, and Charlie recently earned the title of US Marine and is a student at Portland State while serving in the Reserves.
Currently enjoying the spectacular beauty of the Pacific Northwest and living on the beautiful McKenzie River!
Artist statement I love drama and color in nature, and like to create paintings that make people want to go where I've been. I want my art to be enjoyable and fun. I hope to show a glimpse of God's artistry, and to honor the Master. Having worked with light as a medium,, as well as 3-dimensional form and action in theatre, I try to bring these influences to my pieces. To God be all the glory!
Partial client listing Bureau of National Affairs, Smithsonian Resident Associates, Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, Apple Computer Philadelphia and Atlanta, Philip Morris/Kraft Foods, Men's Wearhouse, National Dairy Farmers Association, National Cattlemen's Beef Association, EMILY's List, Amideast, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and more! Over 250 projects for trade associations, restaurants, retail, law offices, lobbies, and fine homes in the Washington DC area. Full list below: