I started painting and drawing in my teens without any formal instruction, support or encouragement. As I headed into my twenties I abruptly stopped and went through a long period of soul searching, discovering myself and mending my soul. All the while, my dreams of art lay hidden in my heart just waiting to bloom. A 4-month life changing pilgrimage through India when I turned 30 brought me face to face with mySELF and my dreams of art began to take hold of me so strongly, I could do nothing but succumb. I started to paint again and filled up canvases with my heart’s deepest longings. While my earlier works were heavily influenced by Indian aesthetics, my art today is more universal in nature. My works are very woman-centered and speak of the many aspects of the female soul; empowerment, wisdom, courage and grace. Yet I also address the broken parts of ourselves–our fears and vulnerabilities. I believe it is when we acknowledge and share all parts of ourselves and our journey, therein lies the power to heal ourselves and others. I put my heart and soul into my art–every piece becomes a part of me. Nothing makes me happier than when I have touched another person’s heart through my paintings. I strongly believe in the power of storytelling. It is through our stories that we learn, share, grow, celebrate, love and live. Each of my paintings tells a story of the deepest parts of our souls. Of what it is to be fragile, vulnerable, joyful, hopeful…of what it is to be human.
1. What’s your medium of choice and what do you love about it?
I work in mixed media and what I absolutely adore about it is… anything goes! I am always trying out new techniques and products; new ways of doing things. For instance, I just started mixing oil pastels with some of my water based products and they work so well together and create such interesting effects.
2. What are you working on right now? What’s on your camera/desk/easel or in your studio?
For the past year or so I have been in recovery (from an extremely abusive childhood) so I find that working in my art journal has been cathartic for me. I absolutely adore art journaling… it seems to completely free me up and provides an avenue for me to play and have fun. I tend to work on 2-3 different art journals at one time sop that way I can always keep working while waiting for pages to dry.
3. What practices/activities are most valuable to your creative process?
I try to work every single day even if I can just squeeze in a half hour. I find that keeping work on my table allows me to keep my creative juices flowing.
4. What’s one thing you want to share with others about your art and/or process?
It’s a lot of hard work. Sometimes people have a very idealized view of what being an artist entails but, like anything else, it entails a lot of hard work and time. The thing is, though, I absolutely love it! My heart is in it and I feel so fortunate that I get to do this work that is always interesting and challenging and soul-full. It fills me up.
5. What advice would you give to your young artist self?
Trust myself. Trust my voice and my vision. When I was younger, I was so insecure about my art and what I wanted to express. I thought I had to have a Fine Arts degree to be taken seriously. But what I now realize is that I had to believe in myself and my work; I had to take myself seriously.
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