Q: What started it all for you? Tell me your beginning story.
A: When I was in high school, my art teacher thought I had talent. It was not something, growing up in a blue-collar household, that would even be considered. So, I worked as an accountant in Germany. Eventually my husband was transferred to the United States, and I was worried about what I would do in this new place. My husband suggested I pick up something I always wanted to do and work on that. I enrolled in VCU’s interior design program and fell in love with furniture design. I then rediscovered drawing and painting and throughout the years, I discovered my old problem that I’m not really a people person. My friend was the one who told me I should start painting instead. I never looked back from that point on, I absolutely love it.
Americans have a way of being supportive when other people want to change their lives. Where I came from, they would never have encouraged me to pursue this passion.
Q: Tell me about your creative process / How do you approach new projects?
A: I always have several canvases I’m working on. I look at what color scheme do I want to work with, then I just start. The ideas come out of the process. Just by putting something on the canvas, they work together then something will occur to you. Then all the sudden, the more I work on it the more I see. I work until I intuitively feel there is a direction established. Most of the time, I just follow the process and see where it takes me. It took me a long time to learn to leave a painting alone when it’s not working out, let it sit, then approach it again later.
Q: What is your favorite subject matter to focus on and why?
A: It’s kind of weird to explain it. I’m sort of like Bob Dylan, I don’t like to explain my art - I want you to decide for yourself. It’s often about women and their place in the world. I often have themes of the old and powerful Norse and Greek goddesses. While I cannot explain how they would shape my paintings, its just always what I think about when I paint. The powerful place that women inhabit in society.
Q: What are you working on now?
A: I have made so many colorful paintings that lately I’ve been forcing myself to work with colors I don’t use much. I have been working a lot in neutrals to see if I can create something powerful. White, black, and brown, which I have a problem incorporating into my work. It’s been really challenging to work with these palettes. I’ve had a lot of positive feedback so far.
Q: If you had a motto, for your art and life, what would it be?
A: Life is a work of art. Everything I do, I approach as a work of art. I want to feel like everything around me is a great creation. If I don’t like what I see I paint over it, which means I will just start over.