I have always wanted to be an artist, from the time I was a small girl. I loved going to the sewing stores just to see the art on the pattern books. I dreamed of growing up and being the one who did those illustrations.
My father, having lived through the Great Depression, persuaded me to avoid becoming a “starving artist,” as food is quite important to us Italians.
I studied business in college and worked in the corporate world. On my weekends and evenings, I always found myself in some kind of art class or doing creative projects. Eventually, my husband convinced me to pursue what I loved. In 2000 I became a “professional artist” when I began selling my paintings at art festivals up and down the West Coast.
After several years, I decided to teach pastel classes to adults in the evenings. I enjoyed teaching and expanded my classes to summer camps for children, weekly classes for high school students and workshops for adults.
Some of the highlights of my career include: being commissioned by General Motors to paint the Chevrolet Super Sport Roadster; being the poster artist for both the Edmonds Arts Festival and the Sausalito Arts Festival; and of course, painting for McMenamins.
Before McMenamins, my subject matter focused on restaurants, bistros, bars and coffee shops, all painted in an Impressionistic style that tended towards Realism. Not only is the McMenamins’ style different from what I’ve painted before, the collaborative process of working with the McMenamins’ historian is also a unique experience. These projects require using my imagination to interpret the provided history of the properties and the people connected to those properties. I’ve so enjoyed the challenge of painting for McMenamins!
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