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Artist Biography/Journal

I was given an artist critique. The critique said he loved my art. He now wanted me to tell my story. My question was, "Who wants to read my story?" (When there are fictional books to read, mounds of music to listen to, and art that must be painted before the creative wind blows away?)

I didn't have any interest in historical biographies until recently. I read a historical fiction at an Airbnb named The Paris Wife it was about Ernest Hemingway and his first wife which gave me a newfound appreciation for the genre. It took me back to the roaring 1920s-love triangles and a woman trying to discern who she was. I found myself drawn to the characters and the images evoked. It was painting through words instead of color. I found myself, my senior year of high school, distancing from my clique and interested in branching out. I went to a house party and noticed a boy at around the age of 16. I was shy and nervous and introverted. He was loud and the life of the party. He had just shoplifted a plastic cup from the local 7-11. I was instantly attracted. We dated for a short time and broke up as he headed to a college far away. We never did get back together.

While I was struggling with putting the relationship behind me. I painted a woman with thick curled red hair. She was who I wanted to be. She was beautiful, smart and she had a discerning stare in the painting. She still hangs on my walls to this day.

Another painting that I completed early on, Pretty in Pink, it was originally looking through a window out at a boat. It didn't communicate what I really felt. So I covered over it late at night and finished the painting right when the sun was coming up with a girl looking through the windowsill to the viewer. Above her head was a vine that says “he loves you not” and the flower stem itself says “he loves you” with a petal falling below. She was waiting for the love of her life to rescue her. (I now realize this is never a wise idea.) It was painfully tragic - both my real life story and the Ernest Hemingway novel, which is why I enjoyed reading it as much as I did.

During this time I also did a third self portrait Day Dream, it was a girl with Cinnabon roll hair looking forward with an almost blank white pupil stare at the viewer with her head in the literal clouds. Sometimes, it is easier to go through life with your head in the clouds than to face reality and create change.

My mom was a housewife and my dad was a dentist. They were opposites in many respects, but similar in some aspects. The one thing they both encouraged “find something to pay the bills and something to bring you joy.” To find joy, I dappled in all types of music and instruments. I also dove into art, it was a toss up whether I got more paint on the canvas or in in my hair.

To figure out what would pay the bills. I talked to my dad(s)-my stepdad (Orthopedic Surgeon) and my dad (Dentist). Can you guess what advice I received? My dad encouraged dental hygiene and my stepdad thought nursing was great. Both had similar reasons for those professions being great - solid pay, part to full time work and helping people. I applied to nursing school as I liked the ability to work in different settings. I got accepted into nursing school. I kept at my education while continuing to paint intermittently in my spare time.

My artistic streak, a lot of it was inherited. Both of my grandmas' were excellent pianists and one of them dabbled in painting throughout her lifetime. I always loved seeing with what paintings she was working on. My dad is an excellent photographer, with a superb eye for color, and he always enjoyed the arts and encouraged them. I was very blessed to travel a lot in my youth and visited a lot of museums. I was also extremely fortunate to find a trip to Europe during summer vacation in high school that featured photography and history. I had a lot of fun on that trip, but I also felt utterly alone at the same time. My solace on that trip was music (I played Gorillaz on repeat) and my art journal. I had never art journaled before, but it was so much fun! Scrapbooking, collecting postcards, tickets, art doodles, putting my thoughts onto paper.

Did I mention my youngest dog, Ricky, is 8 years old. I got him when I started working remotely as a RN. The older dog, Lucy, is 12 years old. I got her as a young pup from a rescue when she was a wee pup. I had a friend invite me, at that time, to go on a hike with her and three eligible bachelors. Well, one of those good-looking bachelors, helped my dog to avoid straying into poison oak. I was very grateful and thought “what a great man he is. Some woman will be lucky to have him.” I didn’t realize, that lady, would be me many years later! 😊

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