I was born into a family of artists. On my father’s side of the family there have been generations of artists: illustrators, sculptors, painters and stained glass designers. My grandfather’s studio was fascinating to me-the paper, paints, the smell of turps and linseed oil, the paintings and illustrations in progress.
Fortunately, my parents fostered my interest in art. I won awards in High School and as a teenager I attended the Vancouver School of Art Saturday classes and the Banff School of Fine Art. At the University of Victoria I trained as a teacher with a specialty in Visual Arts. I started teaching Visual Arts in high school when I was 22. Of course, once in the classroom I found that there were huge gaps in my knowledge. I added courses in Graphic Design, Photography, Ceramics, Drawing, Printmaking and Painting. Eventually I completed a M. Ed. at the University of Oregon in Curriculum and Instruction, with a specialty in Community Education.
By the end of my teaching career I was teaching mostly 2D courses to students in grades 9 – 12. As well I taught Advanced Placement courses which allowed students to complete university credits while in High School.
I also spent a school year teaching art to Grades K – 5 which was fun and challenging! Attention spans are short in Kindergarten!
I taught in my own classroom and also worked as a ‘helping teacher’ for several years, working with many elementary generalist teachers in their classrooms, demonstration teaching. I also presented and organized workshops and conferences locally and provincially. I recently retired from my career in education after more than 30 years. In 1991 I was named ‘Pacific Northwest Art Educator of the Year’ by the National Art Education Association (U. S.)
During the last few years I have been teaching at the University of Victoria in Art Education and have been supervising pre-service student teachers. I have now taught Visual Arts at every grade from Kindergarten to 5th year university! A teaching friend and I have recently begun teaching retirees.
Now I am spending as much time as possible in my studio. I work in mixed media, acrylic and printmaking. Recently, I have studied Printmaking in Santa Fe, New Mexico and at West Dean College in England and have taken a course in Advanced Placement in Chicago which culminated in an exhibition. I have also attended the Vancouver Island School of Art with the thrill of being taught by one of my ex-students! A great course! I have also been inspired by Este MacLeod, an English artist who runs excellent and inspiring online courses.
I have always been interested in design and have been working with pattern and colour in still life. Each painting is a puzzle to be solved: the colour combinations, contrast of darks and lights, exploration of dominance and subtlety, consideration of nuances of composition are all challenging. Of course, trying to take an original approach to the subject matter is especially important. Each painting presents its own challenges and is made up of a long ‘series of corrections’ until it is complete, interesting and satisfying. I work in themes until I feel I have explored a theme thoroughly and then move on to another idea that piques my interest.
I am represented by Eclectic Gallery in Oak Bay, BC and The Gallery at Mattick’s Farm. I have been a regular participant in the Sooke Fine Arts Show, Sidney Fine Arts Show and the Oak Bay Studio Tour. I have also exhibited with my colleagues at the University of Victoria in our yearly Faculty Show, at Glendale Gardens, Legacy Gallery and with ‘Artishow’ at the Ocean Pointe Resort, Coast Harbourside Hotel and the Inn at Laurel Point.
My work has also been shown at the Wickanninish Inn in Tofino and at the Brentwood Resort and Spa, Tangerine Dream Gallery, Muse Winery and at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Small Works Shows and Art Rental.