I have been a creative individual all my life. Some of the earliest recollections were making paper dolls and designing clothing for them. As I got older, I dabbled in many mediums as colors, patterns, and textures fascinated me. However, creativity took a back seat to raising two sons and working a fulltime job.
Throughout the years, I took occasional art courses when time and money allowed; oils, photography, and charcoal, but nothing in-depth or long term. I also took workshops in poetry, creative writing, and Proprioceptive Writing.
Being super-shy and having low self esteem made it difficult to believe in myself. In the 1990s, that began to change when I studied tai chi and became a Certified Healing Tao Instructor. I next undertook leadership training at the Women Supporting Women’s Center where I led support groups; my favorite being TheArtist’s Way based on the book by Julia Cameron. I also participated in many poetry readings at local bookstores. The more I was in front of people, the more confidence I gained in myself.
That decade also started me in working with multi-media – part painting, part using findings from nature, and part creating with a number of small items that caught my eye. One of my favorite pieces is one in which I used all the earrings from my younger days and no longer wore; and those in which I’d lost half the pair.
The last job my father ever did was in replacing a slate roof. He brought me home the old slates and I did a series of paintings on them using only black and white and occasionally one or two other colors.
With camera and notebook, I spent hours walking the lonely beach or solitary wooded paths. Words flowed and many poems fell onto the pages. I took thousands of photographs. Eventually, three books were published; two chapbooks of poetry and a bigger book of poetry, photography, and art.
Life made a drastic change when I quit working full time to stay home to take care of my mother. While on the one hand, the emotional upheaval of watching a parent decline was heart breaking, the other side was that I was able to devote time to being a “real” artist.
We moved away from the seacoast and I added charcoal landscape drawing to my creative repertoire. That was a radical and interesting change as I always focused on color. Sometimes, I add a “touch of color” using pastels. Working with charcoal brings a bit of a mystery to the projects.
I became a freelance writer/photo journalist, and editor with the local newspaper The InterTown Record. Each week I also put together the community calendar, write a neighbors’ column, and, once a year, I’m responsible for verifying and editing information for the yearly Summer Guide and writing a feature story. I do occasional interviews and cover various local events. The best part is that I can do most of the work from home which allows more time to focus on my art.
The charcoal landscape drawings evolved into amazing charcoal-pastel landscape drawings. The pastel colors add an exciting element to the drawings with my style always evolving and improving. Eventually, it was almost all pastel.
And so, I am not an artist devoted to one medium. First and foremost, I am a writer. That is the strongest drive in me, but photography runs almost as strong and in the back of my mind, the easels are always calling.
I write in my journal every morning as that is often the time when issues resolve and creativity is sparked. Ideas are overwhelming and I cannot ever accomplish everything that gushes forth from my brain. I’ve written one travel writing book Too Cold for Alligators and three others are in the works (I have more ideas than time).
Camera and notebook go with me whenever I leave the house and are by my side as I work during the day. I take many pictures of the birds and critters that come into my view. In my travels, I am always conscious of possible photo opportunities, a chance at interviews and any information to be noted.
Life is an artistic journey and I love sharing what I find. Every day is an adventure. As an artist, I am always looking for that “something different” to set my work apart. There are so many interesting things in life. I can’t focus on just one thing. For me, the writing, drawing, and photography are all important. I can easily explore the feelings of emptiness as well as play Native American Flute to bring me to that place where creativity lies. Then the excitement takes over and I’m bubbling over. Enjoy what you see! And let me know …
My work since 2009 has been exhibited in these locations:
Brown Memorial Library, Bradford, N.H.
Goffstown Art on the Wall, Goffstown, N.H.
Jaffrey Civic Center, Jaffrey, N.H.
Library Arts Center, Newport, N.H.
MainStreet BookEnds, The Gallery, Warner, N.H.
NHSPA Exhibits in Exeter, New Castle, and Concord, N.H.
Tall Pines Realty
and other venues.
My photograph, Contemplative Moment, won first place in the Library Arts Center photo contest.
, Sasha Wolfe, All Rights Reserved
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