I was raised in a rural Quaker community without a TV or commercialized toys, so most days were spent playing and exploring outdoors, and teaching myself to read before kindergarten. From a young age I loved to draw, but my father didn't see the value in art, so I was forbidden to draw unless it was a school assignment.
My paternal ancestral tree has an abundance of artists, political and influential figures since 937AD. I shared an especially close bond with my great-grandmother. She didn’t have running hot water or an indoor bathroom, but it was my favorite place to be. She instilled the importance of acceptance, understanding, embracing and learning from others different from myself and that true kindness is helping others, without expecting something in return.
Unfortunately, art took a backseat in life. Over the years I gave work away as gifts and did some commissioned work, but there've only been a few brief periods where I had time to create work for the purpose of selling in galleries. I felt there'd always be time later; well this is later.
Several years ago my hands became increasingly weak, began to noticeably tremble and twitch. I was diagnosed with degenerative cervical and upper thoracic spondylosis. My condition is irreversible, so my career as a medical massage therapist was over. With the aid of medication and working in short bursts, I'm able to paint. My interests have always been eclectic; my desire is to try anything that pops into my head. Being a firm believer of one door opening when another closes, I'm looking forward to exploring new mediums and pathways.
Art and poetry are sides of the same creative coin. Poetry and short stories provided an outlet for the rejection and isolation associated with ADHD and dyscalculia. Although my Turner Syndrome is on the milder scale, not growing and developing like other girls made me a target for extreme bullying, teasing and peer humiliation. Occasionally, a composition prompts a painting, while other times a piece inspires the poem.
Whether it's empathy or a strong desire to share the power of art, I established a charity providing free art classes for terminally ill children. I recruited financial sponsors, volunteers, local artists to teach their medium and galleries willing to host exhibitions for kids to display their work, talk about what inspires them and even sell their work.