"Exploring with paint has awakened the child in me.  The child who is excited by bright,  bold colors.  The child who loves to play and isn't afraid to experiment.  The child who thrives on being messy and doesn't mind being covered in paint and doesn't  worry about the paint that has jumped off of her paper onto to her surroundings. The child who doesn't see failure and who can never learn enough about art. 
     I always wanted to learn to paint but was too insecure to try.  Plus, I  didn't really have the time until I retired from my career as an elementary school teacher.  I am so thankful that I finally decided to take a chance and follow my dream.  Now I can spend as much time as I want exploring and playing with different art mediums, and it brings me so much  joy! 
     I am a self-taught artist who has spent hundreds of hours reading about art history and different art techniques.  I have observed countless hours of  videos of various art mediums and techniques.  The best part is the hours I have spent exploring  on my own.
     My favorite aspect of art is experimenting with color in all of its splendor!  Color can pull you right into a painting!  Color energizes paintings and can make you excited and fill you with happiness.  That is why I embrace color in my art. 
     When I first began to paint,  I tried watercolor landscapes but they did not excite me.  I did love watching the flow of the watercolors  as they mingled together on the watercolor paper,  but landscapes were too restricting.  That led me to being more free with watercolors and liquid acrylics.  I wet my watercolor paper and dropped  watercolors and liquid acrylics onto the paper and observed  how the colors interacted with each other.  The flow of one color into another really excited me and led me to more experimentation.   I later discovered a wonderful synthetic paper called yupo, which allowed the colors to play and dance more freely together. I also found this to be true with alcohol inks.   As I paint with liquid acrylics and alcohol inks,  I allow the paint to be in control.  Where the paint leads, I will follow!  I have no way of knowing what the paint and inks are going to do, and that is what is so fascinating about this technique.  Sometimes the most fabulous patterns and designs will appear.   As Bob Ross would say, "Sometimes you have happy little accidents in your paintings!"   That is not to say that every painting is a happy little accident.  Only a few have that special something that makes my heart smile, and for me that is the real test of a successful painting. 
     Encaustics are another medium that I enjoy.  They are colored bees' wax that can be heated and applied to paper or boards.  By using a hot iron, heat gun, and other heat tools the most beautiful textures can be created that are unique only to this medium.  I could play with encaustics for hours on end and never tire of the surprising, beautiful patterns and textures that appear.  It is such a fun, exciting medium with so many possibilities.     
     Painting with oils is also a joy, but more restricting for my free spirit.  I do love the feel of the creamy paint on my brush and the beautiful textures you can create.  Landscapes intrigue me the most and I enjoy painting beach fronts, lighthouses, cottages and countrysides.  At this time I am especially interested in painting  landscapes of England and Ireland since those are the homelands of my ancestors.  I have a special love for cottages and the hedgerows that cover the gorgeous countrysides.  I hope to paint more oil landscapes in the near future. 
     I am so thankful that the good Lord is leading me on this new journey in my life and I hope you will come along for the ride.  I also hope that I can inspire you to explore new ventures in your life, because it will keep you forever young and make you excited for each new day.