As long as I can remember creativity has been my primary aptitude. As a little girl I always drew fashion models wearing long flowing gowns, what fun! My dad had shown me little drawing tricks, such as using the numerals ‘1’, ‘2’, and ‘3’ to draw a facial profile. Although art was not his avocation, he was a dreamer of ideas. It was he who bought my first oil painting set when I was in fifth grade. Oil was it for me!
I attended ten different schools growing up, so naturally there was a vast array of art teachers. The teacher who most impacted my thinking about presentation and composition was Mr. Crown, Galesburg Senior High School. His artistic statement, used many times in the classroom was, “Design is simplicity, and Simplicity is Design.” After returning to Peoria, I needed my usual art elective but wanted something more. So I was one of the few girls who signed up for mechanical drawing (it was the 60’s). I was privileged to study drafting with Mr. Collier my senior year at Woodruff High School. And it was good! This eventually led to a position with the Illinois Department of Transportation where through a company social I met my husband, Wayne. Early in our marriage we decided that when we started a family I would stay at home. Well we did and so did I. I swapped paint brushes for diapers and never looked back. After four children in seven years all that creativity was well used in family, cooking, sewing, gardening, canning and so forth. When our oldest child became seventeen and ready for college, I re-entered the work force. But this time I was assisting in a special needs classroom. There were bulletin boards to decorate, themes to illustrate, and shaving cream pictures to be drawn, hand over hand. This time spent was rewarding and satisfying in its’ own way.
While anticipating retirement and wanting to reconnect with the art community I was introduced to the art of colored pencil. It was the fun and varied techniques taught by Kay Bishop that opened up innumerable hours of satisfaction and enjoyment for myself and her loyal students. As an Illinois Art League member, I also have benefited from many member-taught and professional workshops. But, it’s the small group settings that have rendered the close and personal relationships with follow artist.