The Golden Age of Magic

My first attempt at steampunk.  Just wanted to try something a little different than just a face or figure.  It was fun, so I might try it again.  


About the Process

I had to do an artist statement with this one, in order to enter it into a competition.  (I really hate writing these.)  But here it is:

I’ve always been fascinated with the visual imagery and rich colors of the steampunk genre.  During a trip to Europe late last year, I took a photograph of this beautiful young lady in her Victorian dress, and immediately began to envision a new setting for her.

The limited palette of dark reds and purples, golds and blues were purposely selected to evoke the richness of the era.    By first placing her against a richly patterned motif reminiscent of 19th century wallpaper, and then creating borders that echoed the embellishments adorning the dress bodice and linear features of her skirt, I further emphasized the antique and fantastical aesthetics that embody the genre.  

Black Water

2018 was the year of cruel ironies.

After 22 years of living in fear of each hurricane season, we retired and moved 5 hours north and 60 miles inland. To get away from hurricanes and yearly evacuations. And one week after we moved, we were wiped out by Hurricane Florence.  One week, people.

We had spent most of early 2018 cleaning out every closet and drawer, separating years of clutter from what was important enough to pack and take with us to our new home.  Paid movers $10K to move those treasures. And before the photos, memories and belongings were even unpacked, they were taken away in a flood of dirty ‘black” water.

The perfect new home that we had searched up and down the east coast for, with its beautiful kitchen, an art studio for me, a yard big enough for the dogs, and Mike’s boat in the canal.  To save it from black mold, we had to gut it down to the studs.

Even now as I type this – four months after the storm – we are still living in that gutted home.  No walls.  No bathrooms.  No kitchen. A plywood floor. No end in sight.  Because we weren’t the only ones this happened to, far from it.  It’s everywhere. It happened to everyone.

Losing everything is just the beginning of the nightmare. Every day is a struggle.  You wake and start the fight again. Mortgage companies, insurers, governmental red tape. Hours on the phone. I swear I will hear that “on hold” music when I die and go to hell.  Wait.  Maybe I already did and don’t know it.

Sometimes, you may get a glimmer of hope.  A contractor who can fix this mess. Someone at the mortgage company who listens.  You think you can move forward. And then, it falls apart.  Again.  You cry for a day, then start the fight again.  Because you have no choice.  This is your life now.

Black water.  The painful, never-ending crawl through the aftermath of a disaster.


About the Process

Do Me a Flavor

Do Me a Flavor was recently selected for the Southern Watercolor Society 41st Annual Juried Exhibition in Bradenton, Florida.

The juror will be John Salminen, and it will be on display from May 15, 2018 through June 22, 2018.

About the Process


  • Metamorphisis was selected for the 2018 Georgia Watercolor Society National Exhibit.  
  • Awarded with the GWS Peach Award (highest award for Georgia residents included in the competition) and 7th place nationally.
  • GWS signature status achieved

Juror: Kathleen Conover

A little different of an approach for me.  I have been experimenting with applying a gesso and matte medium mixture to my paper before applying paint.  It give is a more textured appearance. Before applying any paint, I used butterfly stencils (using cardboard) and sponged on the mixture, to echo the butterfly on her shirt and play on the metamorphosis theme.  

About the Process

Silent Partner

Silent Partner was selected for the 2017 Georgia Watercolor Society Members Exhibit

Juror: Jeannie McGuire

About the Process

What's the story?

I took this photo one evening while at one of favorite places, Seagles Bar, in St. Mary’s, Georgia,  We own a 1905 Victorian home there, right across the street, so it is a great place to stumble home from. 
And it has the most awesome people.  This is Bob, the husband of the bartender, Cindy.  Cindy’s famous for her loud, boisterous personality, and Bob works silently in the background, helping her out. 

High Brow

What's the story?

One of favorite things to do is take photos at parades.  You can capture so many different faces, without people giving you suspicious looks. 

I have no idea who this man in; he was just riding his golf cart around the parade route at the Fourth of July parade in St. Mary’s, Georgia.  But I just adored his eyebrows. 

My title came even before the painting started.  High Brow.   Which made me start thinking about the background.  

In this day and age, the “average white guy” is in a tough spot.  This man’s look, and the wrought-iron gate behind him, made me think of the difference between his small-town existence and the perspective of those that now look down on him.  So I went with it.

I am not really a political or “statement” artist, so I guess I will go back to painting adorable kids and pets.

About the Process