When asked why I teach my oil & cold wax abstract painting workshops I have a short answer and a somewhat longer answer. The short answer is quite honestly that I teach to learn. The somewhat longer answer follows-
The image above is my “first” painting. The first executed deliberately; my first “official” creative response to the world in which we live. It is a small (8” x 10”) oil painting of an image I found in a magazine. It is painted on a canvas covered cardboard which cost $0.25. The year was 1960, I was twelve, and the universe was beginning to speak to me. What I was hearing was A – R – T. At first just a whisper, it grew in volume and authority when I met my high school (1962 – 1966) art teacher Alice Van Dam and the music teacher Don Weber. Now I heard A-R-T-I-S-T and T-E-A-C-H-E-R. That was my first calling.
The next call I got was from Uncle Sam and I found myself in Vietnam serving in the US Army. The year was 1969. It changed the trajectory of my life in ways none of us anticipated. That year unleashed a tsunami of emotions: guilt, fear, despair, disillusionment, apathy, vulnerability, hopelessness and confusion. I spent the next decade caught up in its surging currents, its thunderous white water and silent undertows drowning out those chants of A-R-T-I-S-T & T-E-A-C-H-E-R. During this time (1970-1980) I did practice my art. I now understand (hindsight) that my art was my self-imposed therapy. I survived that decade but unfortunately, when the corporate life began the art stopped.
By 2000 I was hearing the voices again – stronger and more urgent than ever – after all I was no longer 21! I retired from the corporate world in 2007 with a promise to myself to return to my art. I just wasn’t sure how or if the world would be receptive. In 2010 I was introduced to oil and cold wax medium. I instantly recognized my direction and understood that it also gave me a path to teaching. So I am now a full-time professional artist and workshop instructor.
Drawing upon my life experiences and continuous learning I’ve forged my artistic voice in abstract painting. Now I deliver both my process and my approach in achieving authentic abstract art to workshop artists around the world, from my Minneapolis studio to Paris, France and many places in between. I truly love sharing my Process, Purpose & Passion approach with other artists and hope that you will join me. Together we will explore authentic abstract painting, we will share and learn and have FUN doing it!