Alighted Upon a Magnolis #2

              Private Collection

All that I do, say, paint, write, and even dream, are expressions from my inner self; thus the name I’ve chosen for my studio—Inner Expressions Studio—a space where I paint, create jewelry, work on dreams, and write newspaper columns, essays, stories, and memoirs. All these avenues of expression compete for my attention.

I began drawing and painting as a child. A young friend gave me my first oil paint set when I was 10 years old. I always enjoyed the occasions when a special art teacher came to our elementary school classes. I attempted my first paintings in watercolor and pen and ink in the sixth grade and received recognition for them in a citywide school art competition.



  Paintings

Early Artistic Explorations

Through the years I explored various painting media and crafts, including weaving on my mother's floor loom, quilting, and creating pins and earrings using small decorative  shells. My current medium for jewelry making is semiprecious beads.




College arts and crafts courses gave me a basic foundation upon which I built during subsequent years of continuing education on my own and at many workshops under internationally known artists.

Jewelry

Creative Writing

The desire to write reemerged more than a decade ago. In 2000 I began writing a column on dreams for local newspapers. After my cancer experience and after taking courses in creative nonfiction and memoir writing, I wrote Guided by Dreams. My short story, Home Grown Chicken for Dinner, recounting an experience from my childhood, appears in The Blue Ridge Anthology 2009. My second book, Dream Explorations: A Journey in Self-Knowledge and Self-Realization, was published in 2014.

Inspired by the writings of my grandfather, when I was eight to ten years I wrote and illustrated a children’s book and several children’s stories. With typing and binding assistance from my mother, we created a limited edition of three books. The stories were actually published in a church-related magazine.



Dreams


Memoirs


Watercolor—A Challenge

Although I had tried my hand at painting watercolors as a child, as an adult I felt intimidated by the medium. When I painted with oils, the fumes from turpentine gave me a headache; so I switched to acrylics. But they didn’t inspire me. I loved the appearance of watercolor paintings with their luminosity and freshness. So I took up the challenge and began using watercolors. And they have become “my real love.”


Examples of my watercolor paintings can be seen under Creative Painting and More Painting. Additional examples will be posted in the future.


Teaching Career

After student teaching and receiving an M. A. from the Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, I taught Arts and Crafts in a junior high school one year. I detoured from art for a while, teaching second and third grades in elementary schools in Virginia and North Carolina, marrying and raising two children.


Beginning in 1972 I taught weekly on-campus and off-campus courses for Southside Virginia Community College for 10 years. Since then I have taught private classes and workshops in various locations.


Also I have given slide lectures, art critiques, and demonstrations to local and regional art and civic groups and have judged various art competitions.


Art in Healing

Since 2006, I have been working with the co-founders of the Healing Power of Dreams Project of the International Association for the Study of Dreams to introduce and encourage the use of dreamwork as a complementary therapy in the Charlottesville area. Dreamwork is beneficial for everyone, but can be especially helpful for persons experiencing serious illness. Dreamwork can become a journey toward recovery, toward wellness, toward wholeness and true healing.


The creation of personal mandalas can be used in connection with working with your dreams or the process can stand alone as a way of learning what is going on in one’s pysche at the time—what feelings and issues need attention. I have co-facilitated workshops on dream mandalas with Tallulah Lyons at conferences of the International Association for the Study of Dreams and the Haden Institute.


For general information on Mandalas, read ›››


For information on a Guided Process for Creating Mandalas, read ›››



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In recent years I have become increasingly aware of the healing potential of art, both for the creator and the viewer. I have been exploring various ways to combine interests in therapeutic art, dreamwork, and one’s personal process of spiritual growth that Carl Jung called “individuation” to be most effectively of service to others.




 Mandalas