Partnering with People

Traditionally the role of artist has been a solo endeavor, and a lot of people probably imagine the artist stowed away in a room all by him or herself creating his or her art. But my experience as an artist is not and has never been that way. I began learning art in my father's studio which was always buzzing with activity of different people coming and going. Multiple artists worked in the same building, and I learned to associate that companionship with creating my art.

As a result, I am not a solitary artist. I work in tandem with my client's vision and the feedback I receive from them. We get to know each other in a way that gives each portrait I create an individuality that is as unique as the irises of my subjects'. No two are exactly alike.

While I handle the particulars of the lips, noses, and poses of my clients, I rely on a combination of partners who enable me to accomplish the goals I've chosen to undertake. Portraits, the portrait company that handles all of my contracts. Their collection of associates do the work of connecting me to clients, and orchestrate my contact with the darling individuals I eventually get to capture on my canvas. Their commitment to excellence and their consistent quality of service is why I've chosen to work with them exclusively.

With the network of women whose efforts keep me in the studio, I have enlisted the help of a small army of women at home who enable me to meet the needs of my family as well. Being a mother is full-time work, but I have found ways to make myself more available to my children that don't demand I give up my work at the easel. These women are like extra limbs that reach the places in my little world that I don't have to touch directly. They give me freedom to be responsible for what is essentially mine and cannot be outsourced.

At the end of the day, I go to sleep knowing that I have a lot to do, but I also have a lot of support. My goal is connection. Everyone I work with aids me along my way by bridging the gap between what I can and cannot do and be alone. And I am grateful.

Wedding Day

Anyone who has helped plan a wedding knows all too well the tremendous amount of time, money, and attention that can be spent creating the perfect moment surrounding the union of two people in love. But, in that moment, all of the hubbub fades to the background, and the happy couple simply stands in front of their friends and family to pronounce their commitment to one another. They call attention to the best and beautiful in the other, and everyone present, whether one friend or a thousand, witness a miracle.

My wedding was a small, intimate affair including only my closest friends and family. In the photo above you can see the entirety of everyone in attendance. I wanted this photo to capture the feeling of that special day for Tyler and I, and that is what I hope to capture in every live painting I create. Whether it's the mood of the music and dancing during the reception, or awe and essence of the ceremony.

In addition to me capturing the movement of the event, my presence and action in doing so has the bonus benefit of heightening the spirit of celebration. It's not me, personally; I just happen to be the one there. Nevertheless, a live painting presents something personal and completely unique for the wedding party and guests. At this once-in-a-lifetime event, a piece of artwork is created for the onlookers that will be forever a reminder of the wedding day, and the beginning of two individual's new life together.

I travel all around the country to paint weddings, and starting this year I am interested in working with local florists and wedding vendors to help make that special day more doable. Bud Floral, on Signal Mountain, is the floral provider I will be coordinating with in Chattanooga. Working with both of us provides a discount when you book us both for an event. I love working with florists, whose creations are so prominent in my paintings. Contact me at I look forward to the events I will capture with oils in 2017 and beyond.