A football painted in oils in 8th grade, was my first ever drawing/painting, and my Art Teacher, Miss Pierce, admired it and entered it in a Show. Although I had an artistic nature, I let life get in the way. As a young person in Australia growing up in the 1950’s we spent all our time outside in nature. This was formative to my later life as an artist I now realize.

I kept trying to pursue art, and was always interested in creative pursuits, crafts, music and anything bohemian. When my children went off to college, and my husband was wrapped up in building our business, that I realized I had a burning desire to see Tuscany.  This led to a magazine article about an artist running a workshop in Tuscany, that finally pushed me to take the leap!

After signing up for the trip, and not knowing a thing about the artist, or art, I bought everything on the supply list, jumped on the plane, and lost my heart to Italy…then I knew I had found my tribe, and my place in life.   The first night in Greve, we had a slide show the see everyone’s work, I had brought some little sketches I had copied, and when I saw the gorgeous work these artists were doing, I hid my drawings behind a pillow!   Incredibly intimidating, although I realized later that they would have been kind to me and cheered me on.

So there were no demos, and our leader said Just go out and paint! Just the kind of encouragement I needed.   She was very loose-goosy in her approach which suited me perfectly!  I dragged my equipment up the hill following my newfound friends, asked what we  are doing – they said watercolor – I said I’ve got that, they helped me, and I produced a fairly decent beginning, I was hooked! Stay Tuned my next post will talk about how I developed my love for Matisse…

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