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How did you discover you wanted to be an artist/what (and when) got you started down this path?
Even at a young age I have always had an artistic flare and an interest in art. I remember watching Bob Ross on PBS as a child and I would try to create the same "happy little trees" as he did with whatever I could find around the house. Growing up in a small school there was never an art class offered, but I do remember vividly special art projects that were completed in class. Some of my favorite were from my sixth grade year. I was so fond of those pieces, not because the end product was a master piece but for the way they made me feel; enjoyment and happiness. I actually held on to those projects for over twenty years.
Once high school ended and it was time for college I didn't consider the option as an artist for a profession. My first semester away from home was really hard for me but I found comfort in a drawing class. I can honestly say, that had it not been for that class and some special people I might have tuck tail and run back home. I continued with my current major but also took some basic art and design classes at Texas State University. After graduating with a degree in Retail Management, I focused mainly on my children and husband’s business. With two major moves across the state, we relocated to the DFW area in 2010. When the time presented itself, I started a venture to figure out what I wanted to do when I “grow up”.
Between my job and family responsibilities, I began dabbling in painting, including some murals and custom projects. In 2012, a DIY Christmas project introduced me to pyrography. I made many of my family members cutting boards that I decorated by using an inexpensive craft burner. The enjoyment from this project prompted me to learn more about wood burning and before long it soon became an enjoyable past time. I started experimenting with the combination of wood burning and oil painting. In 2013 I started my business, Wonderwall Designs. I created a Facebook and Etsy page to sell my designs and made to order family trees. Quickly, many people took notice of my work and encouraged me to find additional places to promote my art. My first public art show was in the summer of 2014 in Salado, Texas. It was more than I ever expected. I was being called an Artist. Though I am still exploring and developing my personal style, I am no longer in search of what I am going to be when I “grow up”.
What inspires and influences you as you’re creating your pieces?
Growing up in a small farming community in Texas, I carry a love for the country, nature, and a strong passion for family ties into my work. God's beauty is all around us. One of which is the tree. I enjoy creating trees. I see so much when I look at a tree. No two trees are ever alike. There is not a right or wrong look to a tree. They are beautiful in any season. They represent LIFE, GROWTH, CHANGE, PAST, PRESENT, and FUTURE. I feel that trees are a great analogy to human life.
When people see your work, what do you hope they feel?
I hope that it evokes a feeling of happiness and amazement. More importantly, I hope that it can trigger a memory or a special feeling that is personal for them