I began at a young age as an artist, winning the 1998 George Fox University Art Competition and selling numerous portrait commissions. As I went through the many changes that occur on the road to adulthood, I was overwhelmed by how much I wanted to express, and needed to write it all down rather than to paint. I felt that I could reach the ultimate truth through writing, but time and age have taken me right back to where I started. The language I want to express now has again become visual - more subtle and open to interpretation. Though I continue to write, art is my place of meditation.
I owe this turn of events equally to publishing a memoir and to my job as an art model. Writing the memoir was a cathartic healing process, but publishing it left me feeling overly exposed. Strangely enough, I’ve never felt that way as a model. In many ways, modeling brought self-acceptance. Yet the greatest benefit to becoming a model was having access to the full education that I never received in my more formative years. While waiting to pose, I’ve sat through hundreds of lectures, analyzed every pencil mark and brushstroke, staring at the many versions of my face and body on the page – sometimes unrecognizable, and other times too familiar. The human form is fascinating and varied. Even the same model never quite looks the same from painting to painting. Light and environment and season all come into play. Through this fascinating daily observation, the drive to make art came back. I have continued my education at Gage Academy Of Art, where I also attend weekly open studios.