Things happen in life. As a child, playing at the beach, an ocean wave would dissolve my sand castle. Sometimes on a family vacation we would take a complicated detour. In the face of such rude interruptions in our lives, my mother would cheerfully say, “That’s just part of the rich tapestry of life.” In the ensuing years I have learned that darker mysterious times bring out a rich tapestry of memories, and when I paint, I imagine a tapestry of unusual color and shape arrangements. Each shape has its own integrity but fits in perfectly with the whole.

Recently I was inspired at an exhibition of Gee’s Bend quilts. The women in that community have limited resources and have to make do with whatever fabric is on hand, so they piece together seemingly incongruous shapes, sizes and colors into a beautiful quilt that surprises the viewer by disrupting the normal color pattern.

When I started my paintings, I needed a vacation from the grayness of winter. This series of oil pastels began with a hunger for the colors of summer, and ended with anticipation for the colors of autumn. Each color came like a note of music, calling forth another color sound until the page was filled with emotion. For my larger paintings I used oil and acrylic paints, oil pastel, and oil paint sticks, then I carved into the layers to create texture. I hope that my paintings can inspire a different memory or mood for each viewer.