My very first memory is of painting. I was four years old and quite confident in my ability to express myself with color crayon on manila paper. After all, I was aware of my artistic abilities, having had considerable art experience as a Blue Bird at Happy Hearts Kindergarten.
As I recall, this first masterpiece was of a beautiful lakeside forest on a bright summer's day. You can imagine how terribly disappointed I was not to have even received an Honorable Mention from the Ocala Recreation Center, and even more shamed by the fact that my brother Larry had won first place. He wasn't even an artist! While my painting was stored not so neatly under school papers on the back corner of my closet shelf, my proud mother had Larry's work of art framed, and it remained on his wall from that day foreward, a reminder of the first setback in my career as an artist.
At the age of 17 my mother retrieved my saved painting from the closet shelf, and I realized that this first "masterpiece" was actually quite ordinary. Two rootless tree trunks with round green tops, blue sky at the top of the page, blue water at the bottom, and in the upper left-hand corner, a big yellow sun wearing a broad black smile. Classic art of a four year old. Any four year old. I humbly determined right then and there that I may likely not be the best critique of my own skills as an artist. I also became humbly determined to hone said artistic skills.
Well, I'm still honing and always will be. After all, art education is not something which can be completed with the acquisition of a four year degree. (Of course, I'm independently educated (self-taught), so what do I know about these things?) It is a process to which there can be no end, because in such a vast field with new mediums and methods being invented all the time, there will forever be something new to discover.
I don't often enter competitions these days, but over the last 20 years, I've won numerous awards in a variety of mediums, including oils, oil pastels, watercolor, mixed media and pottery.
I am most honored to have received two awards from the Watercolor Society North Carolina's Annual Competition, 1993. This was the only year I was able to enter my diminutive watercolor and ink pieces in the WSNC's competition, due to the fact that thereafter, submissions were required to be in slides, and these watercolor pieces being so very small (under 2") lose impact when projected. The WSNC awards are as follows:
2nd Place for "Summertime, What Sweet Memories", miniature watercolor and ink, (mixed media mini), North Carolina Watercolor Society, 1993
Honorable Mention for "Life Ain't So Bad!", also miniature watercolor and ink,
Watercolor Society, 1993
Some other especially memorable awards were:
2nd place award for "China Dog with Teacup Topiary", oil on canvas,
Chapin, South Carolina
, 1989, my first competition (not counting that miserable failure (see Artist's Statement above) with Ocala's Summer Recreation Program when I was a mere tot...).
1st place for "Sydney's Song", oil on canvas, Catawba Visual Arts League, 1992
2nd place for "We Three Sheep", oil pastel on matt, CVVAL, 1993
1st place for "Bowl of Cherries", mixed media miniature, CVVAL1994
2nd place for "Molly McFarland, My Best Friend", art paper doll, handmade paper and antique lace mixed media, Full Circle Arts, 2004
1st place for "Morning Light, South Carolina Home", Full Circle Arts, oils on canvas 2005
3rd place for "Billy's Submarine", a 12" mixed media artwork inspired by my husband, Bill. I wrote about this piece in Little Pink Spaceship Gazette in 2009.
Somerset Magazine, June 2009
A "featured artist" in Somerset Magazine's June issue. Two paper dolls, "Molly McFarland, My Best Friend" and "Little Deborah" were featured. Also, "The Family Spaceship" was pictured in another article of the same magazine.
Stamper's Sampler Magazine, June 2009
One small piece was pictured in this magazine, as well as a large hand decorated envelope.
Stamper's Sampler Magazine, August 2009
An article "Playing With Paint" was written on my hand painted stamped note cards. Several "Moo Cards" were also featured in another article.
Take Ten Magazine, Sept/Oct/Nov 2009
Spotlighted artist in "Paper Punched Polka-dots", another note card article
On a Personal Note:
Several words are hidden in my artwork. But one that is as consistant as my own signature is the word "hallelujah!". Like a spring at the top of the mountain which cascades down into a waterfall and onward to the sea, God is the source and inspiration of my creativity. The word "hallelujah!" means "praise God". And so I do.