My father gave me my first camera back in high school. We'd walk around our neighborhood and he'd say, "What do you see?" It was on these little trips that I learned to really see the world around me, and develop my vision in photography and art. I feel as if I've had a camera or a pencil in my hand most of my life, and every day, there is always something new, something waiting to be captured on film or canvas.
It seemed a natural progression to branch out from photography into art. Working my way through art school, I think I had an advantage from all the things my father taught me as a teenager. He gave me a solid grounding in composition, something I carried over easily into my paintings. After 25 years as a working artist, I fondly remember not only the things my father taught me, but also the encouragement of my art teachers. Their lasting influences on my life are a part of every photograph I take and every painting I create.
In 1997, my life was forever changed when a beautiful Newfoundland came into my life. Bailey (seen in the above photo) was the reason I went from being a painter working on silk fabric to becoming a canine painter. How many can say a dog changed the direction of your career? Bailey did that for me. Sadly, Bailey went to the Rainbow Bridge in 2005. Now, Watson and Bismarck have claimed their places in my heart. I am so fortunate to have had Bailey and now Watson and Bizzy in my life. They are a daily inspiration in my art and my photography.