I am a graduate of Nicholls State University and have been teaching Art for over 23 years. I have taught all grade levels and abilities, but I am currently teaching high school in Terrebonne Parish. Originally from Winter Park, Florida, I have been a Louisiana resident since 1991. I have served as president of the Bayou Regional Arts Council, the South Louisiana Center for the Arts as well as a board member for the Friends of Nicholls State University Kenny Hill Sculpture Garden.
Most of my art is inspired by the flora and fauna of South Louisiana. The mystical bayous, captivating culture and the endearing people cast their spell upon me on my visit and I have been enchanted by their spirit and energy ever since. My work is colorful, expressive, and often has a sense of humor. (I love it when viewers get the joke!) I work primarily with acrylic on panel but have been known to create "folk art" through the use found objects, corrugated metal, furniture, driftwood, antique frames, whatever!
Questions & Answers
Describe your art in three words.
Colorful - Unique - Playful
Describe yourself in one word.
What do you love the most about creating art in your community? What particular part of your immediate environment, in your neighborhood specifically influences your work?
The best part about making art here in Houma is that you can connect with some many different people easily. Because I primarily show my work at local festivals and events, I love when people stop, look, think, point to a painting or even laugh at my art.
I frequently tell my students and friends that South Louisiana is a place of real magic and mystery unlike the "fake" magic of Orlando. The stories, history, culture and people are what inspire me. Everything from alligators and pelicans, to crab trap floats and irises, to cityscapes and bayous serve as muses for my art.
Describe your creative process. Are there any rituals or rites of passage you exercise before you begin a new piece?
There is no real rhyme or reason for what inspires me. It might a frame I found or someone gave me a panel of wood or something from my yard. I do tend to paint in series though; pelicans, bouchons (crab trap floats), flowers, etc. As a teacher I am often inspired by the lessons I am teaching my students such as: balance, symmetry, form, color, pattern, or scale. I almost always paint in pairs, I guess being a twin is the reason for that. And I figure, if you're gonna paint one, you might as well paint two!
Where do you draw inspiration?
Who are your artistic influences or gurus?
Even after 40 years my high school teacher Mrs. Mulford still inspires me. She showed me artists like Magritte, Picasso, Durer, Calder and Pollock. She also encouraged me to pursue art and to follow my vision on every piece I made in her class.
In New Orleans, art and music go hand in hand. What type of music, band or song lyric best describes your work?
This one needs more thought.
Where can we find you when you are not creating art?
If I'm not at school teaching or in the studio, I'm gardening, cooking or shopping. I love a good thrift shop or antique store.
What is your favorite time of day/day of the week/month of the year?
One of the magical things about South Louisiana is that there is (was) some kind of music/food festival, art show, or celebration nearly every weekend. Hardly ever any downtime in this neck of the woods. I would have to say though that Mardi Gras / Carnival season tops the list, for all the obvious reasons.
What is something people don’t know about you? A fun fact.
I have never seen Top Gun or Dirty Dancing....... (I know, I know!)