I am an artist living and working in Athens, Ohio, with an MA from Ohio University (2010), currently pursuing a PhD in Interdisciplinary Arts, also at Ohio University.
Much of my work focuses on nature and memory. I am inspired by places I've traveled, often revisiting places I went many years ago through my art work. I'm interested in drawing out the emotion associated with a place or a natural object, particularly through the use of color, something that is especially key to my abstract works, where a combination of colors is often the primary way in which I create an association between abstraction and real places and the moods they create. I tend to return to the same places and subjects repeatedly, often working in series in order to explore different ways to interpret a scene or an object. Returning to an old photograph allows me to relive and reinterpret an experience, and so many of my paintings have a very personal interpretation.
At the same time, my primary aim is to transport the viewer either to a memory of their own or in their imagination to a place they have never been before. It is important that my paintings lead the viewer to stretch their imagination in some way. My work is often expressionist in nature because for me depicting a memory means being true to the feeling of a place rather than its exact details. At the same time, there is also a sense slowing down to observe: the unique shapes of trees, the pattern on a leaf, the varied shades of the sea. I hope to create a meditative state that can be a kind of refuge from the chaos of daily life.
As an artist with ME/CFS, slowing down has become a necessary component of my work. At times I am unable to paint or I am only able to paint in brief increments due to not being able to stand, sit, or concentrate for long periods of time. For example, with Ellis Hall Maples (2016-2018) I often worked by painting a few leaves at a time. Living with ME/CFS has also deepened my love of color field painting. Like many people with ME/CFS, I am often overwhelmed by too much sensory input. But color field paintings limit this input and create a serene expanse, which I find especially soothing.