I grew up in the Tampa Bay area of Florida when much of it was a bit more "rural" than it is today. Hours of my childhood were spent doting on my menagerie of pets and caring for a continuous procession of orphaned or injured wildlife I encountered. If I wasn't tending to animals, I could often be found with my beloved dog exploring the woods and a creek that meandered through a beautiful hammock of giant old live oaks bearded with yards of Spanish moss, that were only a short hike from my home. There I dreamed of living life as many different characters from ancient and faraway places.
A deep love and respect for nature was cultivated in me by my father, especially as I watched and helped him tend his large vegetable garden that he planted twice a year. He would often take a break from gardening to tell me a fanciful adventure story based on his childhood memories of growing up in the Appalachian mountains of Kentucky, while we shared a treat from the delicious bounty growing in his front yard tropical "orchard" of mangos, guavas and citrus trees that were surrounded by prolific blackberry vines. Yet I'm sure my artist mother who devoted her talents to decorating our home with a deliciously avant-garde color palate and wonderful murals she painted on our walls sparked my urge to create.
I suppose these childhood experiences continue to color my approach to life and my artwork. My husband and I share our home and studio with two great dogs and four fabulous cats. I enjoy gardening, but mostly I just watch things grow in our "tropical jungle" that is shaded by ancient live oak trees and provides a rest stop for a variety of water birds, eagles and other birds of prey on their way to and from a day of fishing in nearby Tampa Bay. I think my fascination with the everyday miracles that I see occurring in the natural world around me is what triggers the creative process for me. The mediums that I have become most at home with, textile arts , basketry and pottery, reflect my attraction to the art and history of ancient cultures and my longing to feel connected to the past.
The imagery and materials I select is often an attempt to preserve a visual and tactile record of a fleeting moment in time along with the thoughts and sensory sensations connected to it. But most of the time what I create is nothing more than the end product of the joy and comfort I feel when I become entranced with the materials, colors and ritual like processes shared by artisans since ancient times. I believe these timeless craft techniques developed by our ancestors provide a sacred portal to the creative process that enables us to contemplate the mysteries of our spiritual nature, connect with our ancestors and to see the beauty that still exists in our physical world.
See My Resume