Mediums: graphite pencil, colored pencil, watercolor, acrylic, and charcoal
Favorite Quote: “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” Edgar Degas
Favorite Books: My favorite books are any “how to” books about the types of mediums I am interested in.
Favorite Movie: Pretty Woman
I am a realistic person and I believe that translates through to my artwork. I like to draw and paint what I see because I believe what surrounds me every day is art. My art mostly consists of landscapes, people, cars, animals, and food. I am also a very detailed person and that translates through my artwork as well. I feel I need to add every detail I can possibly see in order to capture the subject I am working on. I am the same way when I tell a story or try to explain something. I want to make sure everyone knows exactly what I am talking about. I think it is ironic my favorite quote is “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see” by Edgar Degas because I think I try to get others to see the beauty in everyday things as I see it.
Please tell us about your first experience creating.
My first experience creating was when I was very little. I remember painting rocks and seashells my mom and I found on the beach. I sold them to my neighbors out of my wagon and made enough money to buy ice cream.
What music do you like to have playing while creating art?
When I am creating art, I like to listen to music that is calming to me such as Pink Floyd, Rock Ballads, and sometimes some dance music depending on what I am working on.
If you have a job besides being an artist, can you tell us about it?
I teach art at a Boys and Girls Club along with being a teen mentor. When I teach art, the kids’ ages range from 6 years to 14 years. In just a few weeks of teaching, I was able to give them a different perspective of what they see every day. I have been able to teach them how to break down what they see every day into simple shapes rather than a “whole” picture to make it easier for them to draw without feeling overwhelmed by the “whole” picture.
The teen mentor part of my job is very rewarding. I enjoy helping to guide the teens in the right direction and mostly listening to them.
What are you trying to convey to viewers through your art?
I try to convey to the viewers of my art that what they see every day is beautiful. Whether it is the tree in their front yard, the lake they pass on the their way to work, the face they see in the mirror, the house they live in, and anything that is around them. Some people say to “stop and smell the roses”, I say, “Stop and take in the view.”
Tell us about your creative process, from the beginning of a typical piece to its completion.
When I begin my process, I first decide what am I working on and what mediums I need to use to create it? For example: If I am working on a portrait for a client, I need a clear picture (or as clear as they send me), I study it to determine how I want the portrait to look on the paper whether I will make it vertical or horizontal. Once I decide how I want it to look, I make a sketch and begin to shade it in. I like to take a step by from time to time during the process to make sure it looks like the subject I am working on.
What things inspire you to create art?
I am most inspired to create art by nature. Autumn is my favorite season because I love the brilliant colors of the changing leaves. A lot of my artwork is of the autumn season. However, anything in nature and what surrounds me is inspiring.
2012 Urban Princess Boutique, Philadelphia, PA
2012 Students, Gloucester County College Student Center, Sewell, NJ
2009 Local Artists, The Harbor Bizarre, Stone Harbor, NJ
Have you sold any of your artworks?
I have sold many pieces of my artwork. I am commissioned most of the time to do portraits of people, their cars, pets, and houses. People also commission me to paint a picture they have taken on a vacation or just randomly. I am commissioned to paint murals on and in buildings as well as residential homes. I have sold a few pieces of my artwork that I have painted or drawn just for fun as well.
How do you promote your art on the internet?
At first I would just post my artwork on my personal Facebook page. I recently started a Facebook fan page where I only post my artwork and leave my personal page for my personal stuff. I have entered online art competitions as well as some online art galleries.
What are your influences?
My influence would be my mother. When I was a little girl she would draw just for fun and I was fascinated with her drawings so she taught me how to draw. My mother also encouraged me to keep creating by buying me the necessary tools I needed for whatever project I wanted to take on.
Please recommend another artist you admire.
Another artist I admire is my friend Dianna who is a photographer. Dianna’s pictures are also mostly of nature and what she sees every day. She can capture the beauty of what we see every day and turn it into art with a click.
Tell us something interesting in your life.
I began drawing portraits by accident. My grandfather passed away several years ago and my family asked me to draw a picture of him to place by the book that people sign when arriving to the funeral. My grandfather was one of my biggest fans! I drew the portrait and it turned out OK. My mom and I talked about the portrait and I told her my concern that it looked kind of like a cartoon and I wished it looked more realistic. My mom worked at a book company and bought me a book that instructs how to make portrait look life-like. I read it, followed the instructions and practiced. I had left the sketch book on the table while my daughter’s friends were over for a birthday party and one of the parents had taken notice of it. She asked if I would draw a portrait of her family. I agreed, and it was the most amazing portrait! I showed everyone as well as she did and my orders began flowing in.
Do you have an embarrassing moment in your life?
When I was in high school, I went to a vocational school for commercial art with students from several different high schools. Our instructor was a woman and she was very strict. We had just started the year so I was still in the “getting to know” people in my class as well as the instructor. At this time, pants with a zipper in the back were popular. On this particular day I went into the bathroom which was in the back of the classroom and somehow managed to zip my underwear in my pants. I could not unzip them myself as much as I tried. I peeked out of the bathroom and tried to quietly call to the closest girl to come to the bathroom to help me and of course the instructor heard me. She very loudly asked me what my problem was so I said that I just needed help. She asked what could I possibly need help with in the bathroom? Since I was so nervous that she heard me and embarrassed that I needed help, I just blurted out that my underwear is stuck in my zipper and I can’t get it out! Everyone in the class heard me and was laughing hysterically including my instructor! She and another student came in to help me get it out. It took a good 15 minutes which seemed like 15 hours at the time. I guess looking back now at my embarrassing moment, I realized it became an icebreaker for me with my fellow classmates and my instructor. My instructor would jokingly remind me of the incident every so often throughout the next two years of class. Thankfully, I have a good sense of humor!
If you could live your life over again, would there be anything you would do differently?
If I could live my life over again, I would definitely have figured out a way to go to college for art right out of high school. My father said that I could never have a career in Art because I would be poor. He said that is where the term “Starving Artist” came from. Artist only make money after they die. Back then, for me at least, I could not question it and went to college for what my father said I should, business. I had zero interest in it and I quit.
What plans do you have for the future of your art?
My future plans for my art is to keep making it! I never want to stop learning about it and trying new things! I want as many people to see it and buy it as possible!
Do you have any good advice for emerging artists?
Since I believe I am still emerging myself, I would tell them what I do: keep making artkeep making art. Keep learning about it and never let anyone tell you that you can’t! Tell everyone you are an artist and show them your stuff whether it’s through social media, pictures on your phone or however you can, but tell everyone you’re an artist!