Born in California, I have lived in Albuquerque since 1952, so showing my age as well as my attachment, I can say I am still moved by the New Mexico landscapes of distant mountains, amazing clouds, the colors of the desert, the geology that makes it so special, the dry air, the excitement about rare rain or snow and on any long drive. I feel I could live nowhere else.
I have two degrees from UNM, one in English, with an art minor, leading to a short time in teaching at our first experimental high school, Freedom High. In my forties I got another degree in Art - painting my major and art history, minor.
I paint to remember, to capture an overwhelmingly complex moment without being too realistic. It is actually a very self-involved endeavor as I have to only please myself, immersing myself in that unexplainable drive to express the visible yet fleeting moments in the luscious colors of paint. They are like small stepping stones to the whole and remind me of the gift of our surroundings. I rarely feel I reach my intention. Sometimes years later, I can look back at a painting I did and think, yes, I succeeded with that one. There is something there.
I started with life drawing in college and went on to 15 years of watercolor, then oils, including oil pastels. There is a large collection I donated to Lovelace Women’s Hospital of females in oil pastel, hanging through their Lobby. I have created many flower paintings over the years and almost every flower came from our yard. I did a series of interiors and still lives for years also based on our home. My landscapes come from places I love and visit repeatedly, driven by the feeling of never being done. I often did quick sketches in oil pastels on site that sold well. It was always exciting to work so fast and have them succeed.
My oil landscapes take on a different nature from repeated visits to the site, sometimes even a year later, waiting for the season to change. Then, as needed, I will work on the pieces in my studio, even years after the first work. It is mostly memory work but can change the whole intent of the piece. If it goes well, I have a piece that surprises me as the painting is always a process that unfolds, rather than known from the beginning. I chose carefully now what to paint and it must be very special to me. I focus totally on the landscape. I continue to look at and study other painters. I am still learning and reaching out for more understanding on just how to paint and how to best express the feeling of place where I was inspired. I have not stopped being excited about painting or being grateful for the opportunities to do so. I also deeply enjoy talking to others about painting and their interests or frustrations. Without that sharing, we are too isolated.