Many people have asked me why I decided to become an artist. I wish I could say that I started painting because I was just naturally good at it and that it was always something I knew I should do. But the truth is far less idealistic. I was not born with a paintbrush in my hand, and when I first began, I was far from talented. I actually started creating art as an escape.
For as long as I can remember, I have struggled with anxiety. For many years, I didn’t know that this struggle had a name, and that anxiety was something you could get help for. It was simply a part of me.
Now I know that I’m not alone in this struggle. Anxiety affects millions of people all over the world, and many of us are unaware of how it actually affects our lives. Over time, the struggles start to feel normal. The fear, the worry, the panic attacks all become part of how you live your life, every day. Some of us, however, are lucky enough to find sanctuary in an endeavor so enchanting that it can put all of those fears and worries on pause for just a little while. Art is that sanctuary for me.
When I am working on a painting or drawing, the fabric of the world that has been ripped apart in my anxious mind seems to slowly stitch itself back together. Each little detail in an artwork is a fragment of the world. In those moments, I get to layer and develop each fragment into a beautifully imperfect, and yet perfect, portrait of existence. For just a moment, as I work to create that tiny piece of perfection, the pain and the heartache and the fear that the world has forced into my thoughts, dissipates, and all I have to focus on is blending color and light into a new creation.
Most of my artworks focus on one or two subjects rather than a full scene. By eliminating the background distractions surrounding each subject, I hope to highlight the natural beauty that is already around us, and bring out those awe-inspiring elements that we often forget to appreciate.
I have two creative processes that I employ when creating original pieces. For watercolor florals, I choose a color palette first and then I let my paintbrush decide how the painting will look in the end. On most of my other artworks, I like to work with reference photos for all or part of the artwork. Reference photos allow me to focus on the structure of those pieces first, which makes detailing the work so much simpler. After the structure is as I want it, I brighten the colors and layer in the mood or idea I want to convey. My favorite is serenity.
When you take a piece of artwork into your mind and your heart, you take in a bit of the artist as well. The artist’s feeling and intention gets to sit with you as you reflect on their work. I intend for my artworks to convey the peace and serenity that I find when creating them. I want to impart that tranquility onto you, a gift from my heart to yours, so that you can bring it with you wherever you go. I hope my artwork brings you the same hope, peace and appreciation that it has brought to me.