I was born and raised in New Jersey. I received my love of art and talent from my mother and scientific genes from my father. My career years were spent in the Biomedical Engineering field in Louisiana and Texas. I returned to New Jersey at retirement. I dabbled in drawing from childhood and wanted to major in art in college, but my father said, “you can be anything you want, as long as it’s a lawyer, doctor or engineer.” As a pre-med student in Wake Forest University, I spent much of my time cartooning and doing the artwork for my fraternity, Theta Chi. This did not help my studies and my father pulled me out of college after my junior year and told me to sign up for whichever branch of the service I wanted. So I enlisted in the Air Force and completed my tour of duty. After quickly maturing in basic training, I went on to get an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering, a Masters in Biomedical Engineering and an MBA. Upon retirement I fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming an artist. I started by doing portraits of my grandchildren as Christmas presents for my children...then moved on to serene scenes of my favorite places, Cape May and Mannington, NJ, and have recently started painting Texas scenes.
Pastels became my medium of choice because they are pure color pigments that capture the reflections and light of nature, the glow of the sun on sand, sky or water, as well as the translucence of skin and the twinkle in an eye. I found that South Jersey and the great state of Texas give me a limitless supply of subjects to paint. So many things capture my imagination from water, to nature, to animals, to boats in port, to children at the beach, to fields with cattle, flowers, old barns, and abandoned trucks and tractors.
My painting style focuses on realism, play of light and detail. As an admirer of the works of the Old Masters, I continue to seek ways that they were able to portray light and shadow, as well as fine details. The level of detail creates many challenges, but capturing that realism helps the viewer be in the moment.
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I love to capture the essence of a scene or a personality…so that you feel you are right there. That’s why I have a passion for working in a realistic style. The recording of intricate details such as the ones of masts and spars in “Fishing Boats in Port,” or capturing the wet mossy pilings in “Stroll at Water’s Edge,” keep me looking for things to paint from unique perspectives.
Working with pastels is different than a lot of other mediums as they are dry. Its a little like working with chalk. Colors can't be mixed ahead of time. They are put on a rough surface like sandpaper that holds the pigment, then colors can be layered and blended with your fingers. Of course you have to be careful as the sandpaper will rub the skin right off. Fine details are captured with a pastel pencil.
I was a double winner of the 2019 Gallery 50 South Jersey Landscape and Wetlands Competition. My pastel painting "Growing Cygnets" received two first place prizes in the categories of Best Work on Paper and the People's Choice award. Two years in a row first place winner of the Salem County Art League senior competition in the pastel category.
I'm a member of the Salem County Art League, STROBE (the ARTC South Jersey Artists Collective), the Artists’ Guild of the Cape, and the Pastel Society of New Jersey.
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