When I was young, one of the things I would draw was the Old Masters, like Whistler's Mother, although it would never, ever look like the originals. I was also into faeries, mermaids, horses and Rapunzel.
What books influenced you most when you were growing up?
One of the most infuential books I can remember at that time were the Narnia Books, ALICE IN WONDERLAND, and the Grim Fairy Tales; and especially THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL. Although all of these stories are transformitive, THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL created an elevated sense of reality, and a sense of desperation that I had never encountered previously.
When you went to college, were you already pursuing a writing career? (or a career in illustrating? or just art in general?)
By the time I entered college, I was pursuing a Studio Art career, but put it on hold for about 10 years. I returned to school later, and in my fourties, received another art degree, but in Illustration.
What was your first job when you graduated from college?
After graduation, early in my twenties, I got into textiles as my first job out of college. I became a textiles Artist: indeed, I made, repaired sweaters, weaved fabric, colored, painted silks and finally, cut patterns for clothiers.
What other kinds of jobs have you had?
Other jobs I held besides an artist are: Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist.
When was your first book published?
When I finally received my first published illustrated cover, that was 2004, my first full length children's book illustrations came out in 2009. This picture book is in the stores and available from online stores now. It is called IN HER HANDS: The Story Of Sculptor Augusta Savage and written by Alan Schroeder. I was proud to do the illustrations.
What do you most want the students to get out of your school visits?
After all I went through, it would be nice for others to see that if you stay with something long enough, you will succeed!