Growing up at Lake Tahoe, nature was always a big part of my life. When I was young, I spent most of my time outdoors. Winter was for skiing and playing in the snow. Summers were spent hiking and fishing with my Dad. During these years of exploration, I became fascinated by my natural surroundings. I loved the colors, shapes and limitless variations of the landscape, especially the microcosm of rocks, tree bark, leaves, and wildflowers. My dream was to pursue a career in art... to recreate all those natural elements I loved, and share them with others. Unfortunately, the parents were practical and not very supportive of my dream (after all, you can't "make a living" being an artist). And because I actually needed to make a living, my art career was put on hold for many years.
Some of those years spent making a living were okay (office jobs), others were actually a lot of fun and even creative (floral designer, preschool teacher, stained & sandblasted glasswork). Finally, in 2000, I started taking art courses at Lake Tahoe Community College, and under the guidance of wonderful instructors (artists themselves), I watched my skills grow tremendously. Although I dabbled in a variety of styles and media, my real love was always watercolor... that ever elusive, unpredictable, very challenging medium.
It has taken me several years (or perhaps I should say many years - time does fly as we get older) to become somewhat proficient and at least enjoy the medium without pulling out my hair. I paint in a realistic style, sometimes bordering on photorealism. I create "portraits" of natural subjects by focusing in close on the object, emphasizing realistic structure and details, and dramatic contrasts between light, shadow, and color. I want my viewers to notice details in my paintings that they would not normally notice in life. I employ and experiment with glazing and color mingling to achieve the effects I am looking for in my art.
My favorite subjects follow those natural surroundings I grew up around. I love painting aspen and other unique trees, fall leaves, rocks, flowers, mushrooms, frogs, and even the occasional landscape. After my first visit to Hawaii, I became fascinated with the sea turtles, and they have been a favorite subject of mine ever since. I hope you enjoy!
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