Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, Master of Fine Art-Painting, 1997
University of Georgia Studies Abroad, Cortona, Italy, 1994
Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, Kutztown, PA, Bachelor of Fine Arts-Painting with a Minor equivalent in Art History, magna cum laude, 1993
Development|Growing up in rural Pennsylvania, I developed a lifelong love of landscape. I lived in a wooded environment interspersed with rolling fields of farmland. When I studied briefly in Italy, I was surrounded by new landscape with higher elevations, different shapes, colors and horizon lines. When I moved to New Orleans, my visual comfort zone shifted again. I was challenged by the local landscape with its little-to-no elevation variation, live oak trees and tropical vegetation. Throughout this journey, my perception of the creative process continually developed; first through formal training and then personal experience.
I was lucky in my early training to have mentors who not just educated me on how to formally translate what I see and feel, but also challenged me to connect with my artistic spirit. I rely on my artistic training, but I also allow my instinct to dictate mark-making, color or just knowing when to stop. Although that dialogue is both rewarding and discouraging, it is one which has kept me on this artistic path.
I like to make beautiful works of art. I take what I observe and feel and translate it through the medium into a different experience.
Process|My interpretations of landscape combine observation and emotional expression through interpretive color and physical brushwork. I use both a camera and sketches for my preliminary process, i.e. alla prima. There are merits to both: with a camera I capture many compositions, angles of light and color in a short amount of time while the sketch allows for more extensive color interpretation.
When I am in the middle of a field, marsh, hillside or forest, nature will fill my sense. There are moments while working when I feel incredible freedom and joy placing marks and mixing color. The colors within the shadows; the feel and sound of nature challenge and inspire me. In the studio, the memory of those encounters merge with what was captured by my eye in a digital image.