Thursday, October 4, 2012
As a child I watched my grandfather create beautiful paintings in his California studio during the brief summer vacations we spent at his Woodside home. He was a landscape painter with a considerable reputation. I was fascinated as the paintings developed. During those vacations, my grandfather was kind enough to give me “lessons” which were just enough to make me yearn for art in my life.
Back home in Maryland, my art education consisted of what the public schools were offering. During my middle school years my parents enrolled me in the Corcoran Art School Saturday Program. I thrived there, loving every minute for three years of Saturdays. Once high school started, circumstances changed and public school art classes were again my single source of art instruction.
When college majors were discussed in our household, art was an option only as a “minor.” My major ended up being Education. I was energized about the movement at that time in education to move away from rote instruction and toward teaching critical thinking skills. I went on to hold positions as teacher, director, principal, and principal trainer. Although I may have lost sight of art as part of my personal development, I was adamant about ensuring that art remained a part of each child’s curriculum and that every art teacher should have a room in which to teach and not be forced into pushing a loaded cart around the school when budgets tightened.
When I retired, I finally returned to art and painting landscapes. I went first to oils; however, once introduced to pastels, I’ve never looked back. Just about all of my pastel experiences have been connected to the Maryland Pastel Society. The workshops and demos have provided me access to some of the finest pastel artists in the land and the members are a wealth of instruction, guidance, and information. I’ve had the good fortune to be awarded several honorable mentions at MPS shows over the last few years. It is a privilege to serve the Society as a member of the Board.