It's Always Been About Art And Animals

My Story took a curious path. Here are some fun facts you might enjoy.

Firsts

In high school, I enjoyed painting old houses. I loved the detail of the uninhabited victorian homes with the shingles and decorative arches. There was also something intriguing about such a lovely homes being left unattended. There is a story there.

One of my paintings was entered in a calendar contest run by an insurance company. I was a winner (although not top prize). To encourage artists, they purchased 4 pieces of art with the prize money. The art was used on a calendar sent to customers and then the actual paintings decorated their offices in Chicago. 

In addition, they flew my Mom and I to Chicago, took us to dinner on the top floor of a high rise building and put us up over night in a posh hotel before flying us home. WOW, what a line up of firsts for me. I could have flown home without the need of a plane.

Small World

Freelance work was one way I made money in high school. I was hired by a company to create artwork that was silkscreened onto slate which was then sold in gift stores. 

I also had a part time gig at our big industry in town, a bubble gum factory. There I worked in marketing doing things like creating labels for shipping boxes as well as cards for the inside of bubble gum machines. Sometimes I worked on sales sheets. 

My boss, upon returning from vacation, walked into my office smiling. He was holding a box. When I saw it, we both burst out laughing. A sail boat enthusiast, he had gone West on vacation to visit with friends. They wanted him to have something from a local artist to remember the visit. They had purchased one the slates with my art for him. He admitted I was a local artist, but to him. I worked in a closet in the back of his office. 

The Magic

Two different times during my career, prior to painting, I was lucky to work for magicians who became very well known in their industry. Did I get sawed in half? Did I disappear under a sheet? Hardly! 

In my very first 'real' job, my boss eventually became one of the top mentalist magicians and is in the hall of fame for magicians. Back in the early years, he would come into my ‘office’ and some others would gather. Then he would perform a slight of hand trick and leave us trying to figure out how he did it. 

 

What a wonderfully creative way to get ones mind awake. And note: although performed right under our noses, we rarely ever guessed how it was done. 

Ideas Matter

Over time, I had started and had grown a creative agency that provided branding, package design, and sales materials for a variety of business to consumer (B2C) and business to business (B2B) companies. It was exciting to work with top marketers and product managers in major companies. I learned the importance of strategy and ideas. During one of the client relationships, I created a selling system for matching products needed for various installations. How cool is that? I am the inventor on an ‘Apparatus for matching related consumer electronic products’.

Fur Is Forever

Animals play a big part in my life. There is something about fur and their unconditional love that I find enriching. Although special arrangements are made so fur is not in the varnish, the studio is not the same without critters - so I am happy to have them everywhere. History includes a variety of dogs and a cat, and llamas. (Bet you didn't expect the llamas? And as you imagine, they are outside the studio, not inside.)

It All Comes Together

It took me some time to realize how the things that mattered to me are always there wanting to participate in my life. Texture, hard work, magic, ideas, fur, they all bring something to my creative process. Huge credit and eternal thanks goes out to my parents who embedded the belief that somehow I could do and achieve what ever I wanted. They were always supportive and encouraging - even when I did not always believe in myself. I hope you enjoy the art here on my site. 

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