the process of taking a drawing and transforming it into a
painting, a woodcut, and a beaded piece. Watching the piece evolve as it
changes formats is often a learning experience as it forces me to
re-examine the image and gradually understand its significance. Through
line and color I discover long-forgotten memories from my childhood or
come to recognize aspects of my current psychological state. In many ways
it is similar to determining the meaning of a dream. What does this line,
this image, say about me? About my relationships? About my present or my
It is only after recognizing such information that I
can begin to understand myself and my relationships with others. It
is through this emotional and thoughtful process that epiphanies can
emerge, and common threads become clear. The issues and events
depicted in my work are fundamentally human: love and hate, joy and
sorrow, grief and healing. Thus it is my hope that the works are not
as subjective as they at first seem, but that each viewer will recognize
something of themselves and our shared human experiences within them.
I love the fragmented but orderly look of ancient mosaics, the flat planes
and graphics of the German Expressionists, and the shockingly bright
colors of the Fauves. Iím also moved by the otherworldly architecture of
Gaudi and the rich golds and colorful, jumbled patterns of Klimt. Bead
weaving offers a way to merge all these loves into my own conglomeration.
Woven together, these tiny little bits of glass (about 285 per square
inch) take on a new meaning, a new perception, as they form a larger
The technique is a Native American traditional stitch and the exercise is
rigorous. Even once the pattern is finished and the colors are chosen,
the pieces can take weeks or months to complete. But the process is
cathartic and rejuvenating, and as the image starts to take shape I often
find myself beading far into the early morning hours, only stopping when I
begin to get sloppy.
Despite the arduous process, I continue bead weaving because the end
results are always a surprise and because it satisfies my dual tendencies
for both order and chaos. I get to be spontaneous and expressive with
paint and brush first, then meticulously construct the bead pattern to
resemble the painting. Emotion and logic, anarchy and organization,
madness and reasonóitís the best of all possible worlds.
Born Neodesha, Kansas, USA, grew up in Charleston, SC.
Currently live and work in Spartanburg, SC. Married to