Who I am as an Artist
I have loved creating art ever since I can remember. Both of my grandmothers were artists and always encouraged me to draw. They also taught me to take the time to be present to the world around me and appreciate its beauty. I tend to be overly critical of my own art. I sometimes feel that my appreciation of art is greater than what I create. But as I continue to evolve as an artist, so too, do the perceptions of my work.
Art feeds my spirit. I am able to express my emotions and the passions in my life through art. I create simply and from the heart. The people, places and things I love most; family, friends, memorable places, and nature are among my favorite subjects.
My creations are uncomplicated. I have taught young children for many years and have learned much from their uninhibited and simple approach to art making. I love how easily they are able to create from their hearts, expressing themselves and their passions. They aren’t afraid of making marks or mistakes. They just jump right in. I try to adopt this same approach with my own work. As we grow older, there is a tendency to lose the freedom and spontaneity that came so easily to us as children. Pablo Picasso once said that it took him just four years to paint like Raphael but a lifetime to paint like a child. As an educator, mother and grandmother, I have been blessed to be in the presence of children almost my entire life. Because of them, I have always been able to easily tap into that energy and simplicity. Doing so has greatly influenced my artwork.
I believe that drawing regularly is key to developing one’s artistic skills. Daily sketching keeps me fresh with new ideas and sharpens my artistic vision. My sketchbooks are filled with visual images and notes documenting my personal journey and how I perceive the world around me. Artist, Paul Klee said, “A line is a dot that went for a walk.” I try to put this into practice on a regular basis. Whenever I open my sketchbook, I begin with simple mark making and see where it takes me. A continuous free flowing line never disappoints; it always inspires and grows into something beautiful.
Teaching keeps me immersed in the art world but creating my own personal art is is of equal importance. Creating and learning go hand in hand. I try to practice what I preach by sharing with my students how visual arts directly affect other discipline, daily life and, most importantly, feed the human spirit. Tapping into the ‘’right side” of the brain through the creative process develops and strengthens critical thinking and problem solving skills. Above all, visual arts, if taught well, inspire students to simply create, communicate and express their ideas in a way like no other.
I believe that my love of art is an essential ingredient to living a balanced and full life. Digesting it releases something deep inside of me that enables me to create from the depths of my being. If for nothing else, I choose to create art for the sheer joy and sense of peace it gives me. If my work becomes the object of interest to another viewer, then I am doubly blessed.
“The hand can never create anything higher than the heart can imagine.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson