Born and raised in rural Iowa, I always loved the country and it has impacted my art. My Grandfather initially started me on my quest to become an artist. When we would write letters back and forth he would draw pictures and I would try to copy them and send them back. Eventually I was drawing scenes from the world around me. I excelled in art through my high school years and it wasn't until I was about the age of 16 that I discovered that I was color blind. Like being a composer who was deaf, I felt as though my dreams of becoming an artist were dashed. I kept it as a hobby and sold many paintings, but as far as having formal education, I did not pursue majoring in art in college because I believed that the color blindness would hold me back.
When it came to painting, I felt as though paintings had to be as realistic as possible. I would spend countless hours mastering technique and trying to get the lighting to match perfectly everything I was seeing in the real world. However, when I took up photography, I began to ask myself some questions. I asked why I had to have everything perfect when I painted? I didn't want a photograph when it came to my painting, so I started to paint with feeling and was instantly drawn to impressionism and abstract art. Almost immediately I was painting with passion like never before. I transitioned from brushes to pallet knives and this allowed me to create the texture that I've always wanted with my art.
It wasn't long though and I began noticing my hand shaking when I was trying to paint. This was in early 2017. I had to devise a board that would hover over the canvas and this allowed me to rest my hand on it while I painted. When the shaking continued to get worse, I went to the doctors to try to figure out what was going on. In the summer of 2018 I was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease. I felt my dreams of painting and becoming the artist that I wanted to be were slipping away. I stopped painting altogether when even the board was no longer helping my hand from shaking.
In the spring of 2019 I had a surgery. A deep brain stimulator was put in and it has taken away my physical signs of Parkinson's. I was able to paint again. My first painting was Fall Colors. I painted how I felt and the warm colors in the trees along with the peaceful road were exactly how I felt. It is a painting that means something to me in the course of my artistic journey because I was given back a gift that I thought I'd never have again. At some point the Parkinson's will get to where the stimulator and medications will no longer be able to control, but until then I plan on creating and growing as an artist while praying for a cure for Parkinson's Disease.