As I was trying to heal from a painful divorce in my 40s, my therapist asked me what I liked to do as a kid that made my happy. Immediately, I knew. I answered, I liked painting and doing art. She said wonderful, are you doing that now? I said no-I tried a few years ago, and well, I’m really not that good at it. Why does that matter? She asked. Didn’t it make you happy? I nodded, without a good argument. She gave me an assignment. Bring me a painting next week. I stumbled, gave a few paltry excuses, and agreed to try.
I went to the art supply store, I bought a few canvases, some brushes and paint. The clerk at the store asked me what kind of artist was I? Flustered that my cover had been blown, I explained to her that I wasn’t an artist. She smiled; well you are now!
That week, I did my first painting, I wasn’t particularly proud of it, but I brought it to my therapist. She asked me all the right therapist questions-“how did it make you feel” and it made me feel pretty happy.
I then decided I needed to really do this. I signed up for every class and workshop I could afford and fit in my schedule. Suddenly I was painting with a group of women in the jungles in Costa Rica, traveling to the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, sitting in the desert in Albuquerque, staring at the mountain that Georgia O Keefe made a pact with God saying, “If I paint this mountain enough, can it be mine?” I suddenly knew this path was the one I needed to take. Or at least try.
I sold some paintings at the salon I work at as a hairdresser, also to some friends-that encouragement helped me to do more. To my amazement, I was accepted as an artist to a gallery in Georgetown called Fogue Studios that I had recently applied to. I suddenly had an artist community to belong to, as well as inspiration and amazing support.
Well then Covid.
I was now out of work for the first time in 30 years. What could I do? I painted and painted. I painted 8 hours a day. In 3 months, I painted over 100 paintings. I also sold almost all of those paintings. For the first time, this little hobby was actually feeding me, literally and figuratively. Painting was saving my sanity and actually my life.
I am so beyond grateful to everyone who has encouraged this in me, and I now know, I will probably never go a day without trying to create. (At least I hope!)
I find inspiration in many places. I love animals, (I have 3 chihuahuas!) The beautiful faces of all the women who sit in my hairdressing chair-(whose vulnerability and kindness never stop amazing me!).
I love the Beatles, The Rolling Stones, 80s music and I do have a love for punk rock and surprisingly heavy metal!
My favorite cities are Paris, New York City, New Orleans, Amsterdam, London-all of these places inspire me.
See new art, listen to live music and live a little!
Masks worn inside