In the early '80s, I moved from my hometown in rural Michigan to study art in Northern California. My education includes an MA degree from Humboldt State University, Arcata, California, and a BA degree from Chico, California State University, Chico, CA. I also attended College of the Siskiyous, Weed, California, Monterey Peninsula College, Monterey, California, and Lake Michigan College, Benton Harbor, Michigan.
While attending college, I gained extensive experience in figure drawing and most painting mediums, but my focus was mainly on sculpture techniques and the female form. My graduate show consisted of life-sized, expressionistic, figurative sculptures made of cement and steel. After I graduated in 1989, I continued to build sculptures from the same materials and also in wood and clay until 2009.
After a year hiatus, I transitioned, left sculpting behind, and began to paint first in Pastel then, in oil and Acrylics. At that time, my subject matter changed from the human form to nature and included: landscapes of wildflowers, trees with birds, marshes, and creeks.
In 2016 I needed a new challenge and began painting the horse, and this brought a renewed inspiration and excitement to my creative process. I discovered I loved the bold shapes of horses and capturing the horse spirit and horses in motion.
I recently decided to add other animals, such as bears, bison and wolfs, to my portfolio. I enjoy painting these animals because I admire and respect each one and consider all of them excellent totem animals. I also find each animal fun to study and observe, and enjoy bringing them to life as I paint.
All my paintings since 2016 are Acrylics on canvas. I have often used palette knives to apply Acrylic mediums such as molding pastes and gels to build up forms and add rich textures.
In 2019, I began layering squares and rectangles of handmade papers with Gesso to the surface of my canvases before applying paint. Doing this creates a textured, grid-like pattern while adding interest and depth to each of my paintings.
For 2020 I began a new series of large and small abstracts that are just about; color, tones,
shapes, angles, curves, and texture. It is refreshing and incredibly freeing for me not to think about a subject. Instead, I can respond to just colors combined with other visual elements and how it feels. And like my figurative paintings, my abstracts are expressive and interpretive as I continue to be spontaneous and intuitive during my process. I also turn each of my abstract paintings on all sides while developing them to ensure that they can work in any direction.