Sometimes, by looking closely, and allowing myself to receive what I see, I have experienced a sudden shift.
It happened for the first time when I was 5, on a visit to my grandfather’s studio. As I climbed the stairs toward the open door, I saw a beautiful young man smiling at me. I didn’t realize at first that I was looking at a painting. I didn’t know that the young man had died years before. I was overtaken by his gentle, living presence.
Many masterpieces have moved me deeply, but that first experience is unique.
It convinced me of the reality behind appearances. It showed me what a painting could be and do. As I took it in, and as I experienced an intense connection to the man in the portrait, my life shifted forward. I understood, right down to my toes, that I should keep going.
Since then, I have explored line and color in many media.
They include oil, watercolor, various kinds of printmaking, pastel, silverpoint, and graphite. I prefer traditional materials, and I am pleased that many artists of the past would recognize my tools. My artistic lineage includes Dutch and Italian masters, women artists of all periods, and contemporary and historic American artists. I am a grateful heir to their discoveries.
I improve my technique with study and practice. My creativity, on the other hand, depends on my freedom to break my bounds.
Creativity happens when I stay open to all possibilities. In other words, I must play. In play, I can go over the edge of my known world. I can open a space for whatever knowledge, notion, hint, illogic or intuition is ready to pop up. I find strange relationships, enchanting qualities of objects, and contradictions inside ordinary situations.
My work succeeds when it points to something that was, until now, unfelt and unseen.
That work might enrich others’ experience. Artists have enriched my life in just this way. I want to pass it on.