My development as an artist was transformed when I began to be admitted to artist residency programs. The first was in 1998 and most recent in 2015. Uncountable benefits accrued, from increased daily focus on studio work – without interruptions, to cross-pollination with a wide spectrum of artists, writers, poets, composers, and musicians. These critically important ad-hoc communities provided exquisite opportunities to work and learn, and along the way delivered friendships that enriched my life.
It was a big step for me in 2015 to go from working with local art associations in New England to international cultural exchange programs in Beijing and Shanghai, China. I am grateful to many people who generously vouched for me. And I will always treasure the odd desire of many Chinese women to enthusiastically embrace and be photographed with complete strangers.
No matter what else has happened in my life, I never stopped enrolling in classes as a student. Putting myself in the role of student always makes me a better artist and teacher. Being a lifelong learner challenges my ideas and skills, allows me to walk a mile in another person’s point of view, and propels me into new ways of thinking and seeing.
My undergraduate college work was primarily in drawing, painting, etching, and art history. I worked summers as a book illustrator between academic years beginning in high school. After graduating from college with a BFA in printmaking, I went to work full-time in educational publishing for an international computer company. There I balanced my foundation in hand-pulled prints with commercial 4-color offset litho. Later I completed the circle by learning to make hand-bound books.