A NOTE FROM THE ARTIST

I was raised in my grandparent's home. My grandfather emigrated
from Italy. He understood the value of hard work. I was raised to be
very practical. The arts were honored and appreciated, but lay
outside the practical aspect of earning a living. Many family
members were talented in music and painting, but only in their spare
time. I was convinced very young that while I didn’t posses any
talent in the arts, I was blessed with a bright mind. With work and
focus I could earn my living in offices instead of factories, fields or
work shops. I didn’t begin drawing and painting until the children
were grown. I’d get caught up and work late into the night. It was
hard to give full value to my day job, once it took hold. After the
children completed college, I retired to paint full time. My husband
has given me tremendous support and encouragement as well as
being my framer, helping setup shows and full time critique service.
I can’t imagine my life without painting, I feel this is what I was meant
to do.

Through the years I’ve taken college classes and workshops at the
Mendocino Art Center. Then I began to study with artists I respect
and admire. Most recently I have been studying with Hilary Eddy and
Hope Stevenson on the Mendocino coast, Camille Przewodek in
Petaluma and at the Marin Art School with Jane Heaphy and Dorallen
Davis. I’ve enjoyed the energy and support from a number of
organizations including the Mendocino County Art Association,
Redwood Empire Fair, Mendocino Art Center, Sonoma Watercolor
Association and the California Watercolor Association.

I like saturated color and strong contrast. For the last decade I’ve
been trying to find what is essential to convey my thoughts and
feelings about my subjects. I’m trying to discover a language in the
visual arts that can express this. What is essential? Sometimes I
feel it is every detail, a mirrored image, because it all made me stop
and catch my breath. Sometimes I think a curved line, a squiggle
and a splash of color convey the whole message. I want to say “We
live in this amazing world, be amazed, be grateful, feel joy”, “Life is
brief, pay attention”. I want to be an essentialist, to convey these
essential feelings as they relate to the subject at hand. The energy
used in sadness, anger, grief and frustration can be applied to
something more, something new, something positive, sort of an
internal recycling project. The payoff is energy to do something you
love.

The last couple years I’ve focused my energy on painting open air
style, trying to capture the landscape in a few precious hours and
struggling with the impishness of light and weather. The difference
between painting in the studio and painting in plein aire are like the
difference between having a face to face conversation with a person
or writing a letter. In person there is an immediacy and a chance to
say the wrong thing, not think things through and just respond. A
letter is more considered and at a different pace. The freshness and
distance between the subject and brush are changed when you paint
on site. I’m trying to capture moments that make me say “wow”. I’m
just starting to understand the edges of this process, it is powerful.
The world seems new again. I hope you enjoy my images.

 

 

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