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I was an art teacher and a judge at many Fine Arts events over my career. Most recently, I was a judged for the Deschutes County Fair in Redmond, OR. I guess you could say artists never truly "retire."
In 2007, I had the opportunity to illustrate two children’s books for Guardian Angel Publishing; The Christmas Angel, a story of a family traveling the Oregon Trail, and The Magic Violin, a story of the magic in believing in yourself. This started me on the way towards a new career as an illustrator of children's books for the next many years. Most of over 60 books I illustrated are Home School Approved. Some books provide activities or educational information at the end of the story. Books are for readers from ages 0-12. These books are no longer available from Guardian Angel Publishing as they are no longer in business.
In my Fine Arts pieces, I use a wide variety of mediums; oil, acrylic, pastel, pen & ink, charcoal, gouache, colored pencil, etc. I'm inspired by the incredible beauty, history, and lifestyle of the Northwest where I live. You can travel city-to-city, but the wildness and the farm and ranch lands in between still bring the Western life to mind. I have lived and painted the Oregon Coast, the Western Valleys, and just about everything east of the Cascade Mountains, including Oregon's Scenic Outback country.
In my work, I use a variety of styles from the simple comic to the detailed realistic and accurate historic; something not many illustrators can do. I put considerable research into each story line and illustration. Many of my original illustrations are hanging in the Children's Museum of Illustrated Books in St. Louis, Missouri. Some of my illustrations have won national and international literary awards.
Asked in interviews what I would give as advice to people interested in illustrating; I tell everyone, “This is not an area where one can instantly make a lot of money. Be prepared for rejections from Publishers, but never give up. Better yourself and your talent by taking Publisher’s suggestions to heart and using them to improve your work. Remember, in the publishing world, the Publisher is always right. Too many eager illustrators ignore a Publisher’s suggestions to their peril.”