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It started as therapy

In 2014, my husband and I moved to Seattle from Denver for a better life. I doubled my yearly salary with my new job and we were able to afford a nice apartment, a brand-new car, and I no longer needed a side gig for extra dough. And all of that was great because we stopped stressing out about how much money was in the checking account and for the first time, embraced spending a little bit on things like clothes and vacations. But I had ignored the most important part of that better life – my health. A year earlier, I had an oophorectomy which is the removal of my ovaries, placing me immediately into surgical menopause. It's a bit of a shock to the system and hormone therapy takes a long time to get right. My doctor warned me not to move or take on a new job just yet. I didn't listen because how do you pass up an opportunity to make so much more money? I didn't realize the effect all these major life changes would have and it quickly started to wear on me. On the weekends, while my husband was at work, I tried to decompress by teaching myself how to paint. I had no technique, no idea how to handle the materials, and my art was mediocre at best. It was meant to be a therapeutic exercise because I hate Yoga and meditation is not my jam.

How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

During those first two years, I painted occasionally, picking up a thing here and there, mostly from watching online tutorials. But once I finished a piece, I would just throw it in the trash (with the exception of a couple I still have hanging on my walls). This irked my husband who would have taped every one of them to the fridge if I let him. I wasn't looking to create a masterpiece, it was the practice of being mindful that was my goal.

Fuck perfection

When a few friends started to ask if they could buy my work, I was really stunned. I began to really look forward to learning as much as I could - not just to improve - but to get what was in my head onto the canvas using acrylic, oil, and watercolor, and then moving to digital. I found that sketching ideas on paper and then transferring them to a digital format really allowed me to explore concepts without committing and that freedom helped me explore and play. I started to feel excited about the work, wanting to share it with others. It was difficult for me to say I was an artist at first (yes, imposter syndrome is real) because I wasn't established or I hadn't been in a gallery. And so what? Does it really matter if one of my paintings hangs in the Guggenheim or in the local pub? I just want to play. And play I will.

In July of 2023, my first series "As a Woman" was on display at a local wine shop for the West Seattle Art Walk. My next show is scheduled for January 2024.

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