I am a contemporary realist artist using elements of both fine art and craft in my artwork. My work can appear decorative at first glance, but it is my hope that on second thought, the viewer sees more depth and meaning than just the surface. And if they really look, they will find the paradoxes in my artwork; complex vs. simple, security vs. freedom, light vs. shadow, strength vs. fragility and vulnerability.
The bird’s nest paintings in oils and mixed media are my main body of work, but I have expanded on that to include other subjects, including equine art, abstracts and landscapes.
I grew up surrounded by art and in the studios of my mother and grandfather. My plan to follow in their footsteps as an artist took a detour and I began a decade long career working in art galleries, selling the artwork of others and doing framing design. But the desire to do more of my own painting and drawing continued to grow by occasionally working on small pastel pieces.
In 2008, with a sudden opportunity of time and space to paint and a generous gift certificate to a local art supply store, I began a large acrylic painting inspired by a collection of antique prints of bird’s nests and eggs from the English illustrator, Alexander Francis Lydon (1836 - 1917) that I found hidden in a drawer in one of the galleries I worked in. There was something about these studies of nest and egg that stirred a deeply personal meaning, and I decided to try translating it onto a large canvas. I also experimented with adding a technique I once saw in a piece of artwork from Asia, brought in by a framing client, which was created using broken eggshells. When this initial painting was completed, I realized that I was honoring my family's artistic heritage of portrait painting by seeing the egg as representing the human ego.
Scottsdale Artists’ School
Savannah College of Art and Design