I graduated from Mary Baldwin College with a B.A in Studio Art, focusing on oil painting and arts management.
I have continued to take classes and workshops to broaden my knowledge in oil painting, printmaking and mixed media. Over the past few decades I have exhibited in numerous juried and group exhibits as well as a few solo exhibitions.
My paintings over the years have reflected more and more my time spent out in nature observing the fields, forests and wildlife (mainly the life of birds) and the structures in rural settings – hence my painting series of landscapes, barn interiors, birds and their nests and found treasures picked up along the way.
Why paint with tar? Tar, or asphalt, is a black viscous mixture of hydrocarbons, a semi-solid form of petroleum. It is a pliable medium, which I can draw into (as in oak trees with their textured trunks), emboss onto (as in the foliage of the trees and backgrounds of some birds’ nests) and scrape away leaving behind a wonderful patina to the canvas. I love both the enamel-like shiny and matte finishes that a tarred canvas takes on depending on the temperature of the day and other variables! Adding sand to the area will give even more texture to the tar and dull the area.
My BIRD NEST PAINTING AND ASSEMBLAGES celebrate the cycle of avian parenthood – from constructing the nest, egg laying, incubating, hatching, feeding and fledging the young. Then: Ready for Flight! This cycle is condensed into only four to seven weeks.
The last part of the cycle is the empty nest. I honor the success of the parent and offspring in my “Long Gone” series.
The mixed media of these painted nests includes tar, oil paint, sand, found items and natural materials. Some of the nests are more realistic than others. All have been a pleasure to create!
Many of my LANDSCAPE PAINTINGS are firmly rooted in my experience, observations and memories. I grew up on a farm in north central Pennsylvania. My Dad was a farmer and I was often out in the fields working with the family. “Hay time” was one of my favorite times of the year. I can vividly recall the summer sun hitting the fields of hay, the smell of freshly mowed hay fields, the cool retreats of the tree line and the views of the distant barns and mountains. Life seemed slower back then.
My STILL LIFE PAINTINGS often include found treasures that catch my eye when out walking along trails, driving county roads, or traveling to distant lands, or items from my studio/home. ‘Models’ such as birds and their nests, acorns, bones, old work implements, insects and an old jar casting amazing shadows. In these art works I allow myself time to capture and expand a moment of really ‘seeing,’ hoping to convey the emotion I felt at that time of discovery.
I invite you into a part of my world. Hopefully you will achieve a pleasant experience that just might touch your eye, memory and heart.