I fell in love

with sculpting at the age of 5

I connected

through high school sculpting classes with my dad

I found inspiration

in my mother’s rose garden

My love of clay begin in fifth grade art class

when I was tasked with creating a standing character out of clay. I can still remember completely losing myself in this project until I was totally unaware of the people or sounds around me. I did not come back to reality until my teacher came right up to me to tell me that my time for this project was up. This project was the first of a long series of ceramic studies.

In my high school years, I continued to pursue this passion by enrolling in a ceramic bust class with my father for one month of each year. Taking the ceramic classes with Dad are some of my fondest memories.

The next pathway in my ceramics studies led me to the University of Georgia in Athens, GA where I earned my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. After college, I worked as an elementary school teacher, but my main hobby and passion remained in working with clay. Eventually, I turned my attentions full-time to creating meaningful pieces of art.

The Rose People

In 2008, Marti Schwem, gallery coordinator at the Pump House Regional Art Center, saw my art and invited me to do a solo show. The summer prior to my show, my family and I went to North Carolina for several weeks to spend time with our extended family. My inspiration for my next project came to me one morning as I was spending time with my mother in our family’s rose garden. While taking in the beauty of each individual rose, I realized that roses are a lot like people. On first glance, the roses seem very similar and beautiful. However, as we worked to deadhead the bushes, I noticed how much variation there was in each individual rose, and how each Rose contained its own imperfections. In Mom’s garden, the idea for the Rose People was born.

The concept of my original collection of Rose People focused on capturing individual personalities at a given moment in time, aiming to help people relate to others in moments of intense emotion.

Two months after first dreaming up the Rose People, nine different Rose People debuted at my art show at the Pump House Regional Art Center in La Crosse, WI.

My very first Rose Person made in 2009. She hangs in my home and makes me smile. Pondering Rose. She is saying, “Hmmm. Not sure I handled that one right. What could I have done better?”