I was born in Boston Ma, second of four children. My father was a surgeon, my mother a homemaker. When my father finished his residency in Boston, we moved to Greensboro, NC where he set up practice and we grew up. My mother took us to museums, concerts, plays: valuable cultural exposure. She loved contemporary art; those early impressions are indelible. I attended high school and college in Greensboro, earning a bachelors degree in English and psychology at UNC-G, then followed by an MFA in creative writing at UNC-G where I studied with Lee Zacharias, Fred Chappell and Robert Watson. My focus was the short story. Those were fertile and creative times.
I have always been an artist but it has mostly been a private endeavor. I took some private classes in oil painting in junior high and high school but didn’t study art in the public school after junior high because college requirements left little room for electives. However, I never quit painting. I just continued on my own.
One of the classic ways an artist learns is to copy the works of other artists which I did in those early private lessons; I did a great many miniature paintings of impressionist still lifes- which are lovely to do. Later, on my own, I was captivated by the surrealists, De Chirico, Miro, Tanguy, Klee, copied their works, then incorporated their style into my own. I was also enchanted by the worlds of Joseph Cornell. Later influences include the works of Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Rauschenberg, Helen Frankenthaler, and Herb Jackson.
In my late thirties, I was accepted into graduate school of NCSU School of Design in graphic design. I studied for two years but left before I finished the graduate degree. I received valuable training and research into the history of graphic design, typography, message content and delivery. I attended during the paradigm shift from mechanical paste-up graphic design to computer design. I followed up by teaching graphic design and typography for nearly 10 years at Meredith College, as well as working as a free lance graphic designer.
Using text, numbers, color and texture, my work attempts to convey the deeper impact of messages; the verbal, emotional, and logical content that informs the word. I depict this by heavily layering oil pastels on press-on type– Letraset® – the type used before digital typography. I scrape and scour the surface to indicate the fissures in our psyches which often reveal an underlying message.
Collage is the making of a puzzle; it's a narrative that comes together as one moves imagery on the page- in this way, it is similar to constructing a short story. For me, the best way is to allow the image to emerge; I step back and let the pieces arrange themselves. And like everything else, some days are better than others.
About the photo: Mark Twain is reported to have said: "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco." Amen to that- this photo is from a trip in May in which I naively packed for a Southern May. Ha! Fortunately I had these jeans and my husband had an extra windbreaker - my fashion statment for the week. Wasn't pretty but I was warm!