I am very touched to be asked to submit images of some of my paintings to Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine for their January/February feature article "Today's Masters — Capturing the Spirit of Dance & Music". I'm certainly not the first artist to be inspired by dancers. Dancers are the subject of many, many artists throughout history. Since I was a young girl, I've drawn dancers. I always wanted to be a ballet dancer but in my family of four girls, following our dad from military base to military base, there were little means or resources for any kind of lessons. I never owned a tutu or a pair of ballet shoes, though I could at one time in my youth actually danced on the tips of my toes. Indoors, outdoors, wherever there was enough room, I was dancing, on my own with only the music in my head. And so, I drew dancers...and cowboys, (the dad who raised me was a redneck, born and raised in Fort Worth, Texas) and unicorns.
Once, an accomplished painter asked me why I painted dancers, "Do you even dance?". I was struck by this question. Can only sailors paint the sea? Can we paint only what we have mechanical knowledge of? Is there not beauty and discovery and healing in painting what we yearn for? What we wish? What we regret? He went on to express his belief that I need a cause in my work, something my work could bring attention to, raise awareness of or raise funds for. It has been one year since that conversation and only just today have I reconciled within myself what I really feel. Beauty is a cause. The exaltation of beauty, passion, balance, design, sensuality and scintillation is my cause. Now more than ever in our loud and increasingly ugly world, beauty is not only relevant, but truly needed. Like sending flowers to a funeral to give those in sorrow a moment of respite, I paint moments of beauty, not just for others to enjoy, but mainly for myself, for the process that painting a beautiful painting gives to me and heals something in me.
Through my paintings I've been introduced to incredibly beautiful people and their unique and rich cultures. From my talented ballerina who has inspired a great deal of my work living right here in Kansas City to my exquisite Flamenco dancer in Albuquerque, New Mexico, each time I work with these beautiful athletes and artists in their own right, I'm in awe of their dedication to their craft and filled with excitement and motivation that caries me through the process of giving my whole self to my next painting.
I paint what I love. I paint what makes my heart burst with emotion. Whatever you paint or whatever subject of artwork you collect, I hope you come from a place inside yourself that is authentic, if not understood by anyone else. And I hope you find the same level of joy and inspiration that painting beautiful, graceful, remarkable dancers has given to me.