Growing up on the prairie, I found great teachers in cold moons, hawks soaring against the wind, and storms forming on the horizon. Life here not only survives harsh conditions, but thrives and transforms. Being an artist is how I connect to the spirit of these wild things – gathering elements to fold nature’s wisdom and stories into my paintings – to share with you.
I am a fifth-generation Kansan with a family farming heritage. I think people who live on the land are connected to it in special ways. We notice the geese migrating, sense thunderstorms forming on the horizon and pay attention to when the Cottonwoods change. That’s because we depend upon the land.
I grew up on the prairie knowing the land and sky, but moved away as an adult and immediately felt a visceral disconnect from nature. It wasn’t until I returned to the prairie years later, that I saw this place with a new set of eyes and began to paint.
I am inspired by the mixed grass prairie – an ancient, deeply-rooted place. Austere and wrapped in wind, there are few places on earth where you so keenly sense a kindred connection to the universe. Throughout the seasons, I gather earth’s materials – Indian grass, cedar berries, storm water, limestone, rust, field quartz, wheat, wild sage and yarrow.
They are full of these TEACHINGS I fold into my paintings: