Living your life on the plains of the Texas panhandle might encourage a person to be aware of the beauty in the simplest elements of nature and our everyday lives. The beauty of a sunset, the glory of wildflowers on a summer day, the simple lines and shadows of a rocking chair, or a young child waiting for the bus all stir the desire to create an image with brush and paint.
Art has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I loved to color and paint and draw as a child, creating visions from my imagination. After graduating from West Texas State University, I started my career as a public school teacher and got busy raising a family. At the same time, I began my journey as an artist. I painted regularly during those years with Lou Hansen in Amarillo, Texas, who taught me the fundamentals of oil painting, as well as the joy a person can receive from representing a slice of life in a painting. To me the process of painting is as important as the product. And many times the friends one makes as she paints become an integral part of her life. There have been many fellow artists that have traveled this road with me and to them, I am forever grateful. Although painting was my avocation for these years, it has always been a very important part of my weekly routine. I painted several commissioned works and sold paintings in shows and from my home studio/gallery. I taught art classes throughout the years, as well as public school art in my classroom. For several years I taught art to a ranch family during the summer. I studied with Ray Vinella in Taos for a few summers. Ray improved my skills and techniques, but even more important, he built my confidence and inspired me to pursue my painting professionally. I have also studied with Marilyn Yanke, Jack Sorenson, Ramon Kelley, Rich Nichols, Guido Frick, and a number of others.
My paintings reflect the loves of my life. I traveled throughout the United States and love to paint the places and people that I visit. I often find myself painting children and my grandchildren find their way into my favorite studies.
I worked as an educational consultant serving schools with staff development and consulting over the past 15 years and I served as the Executive Director of Amarillo Art Institute for almost 2 years. That exciting challenge gave me the opportunity to grow within an artists’ community at Sunset Center in Amarillo. The first indoor mall in Amarillo has been upcycled into studios and galleries that house a variety of artists. I opened SENTOSA, my studio/gallery in 2005. I work there daily. Being a part of this has increased my knowledge and skills as an artist. My husband, family, and friends encourage me to continue to grow and develop as an artist. I paint because I love to paint and I love to learn. Painting is giving me a new opportunity to develop a business and career as an artist.