20th November 2020

In the Fall semester of my second year,  I created a series of prints in a shade of cobalt blue, it was by chance. I was working in the studio on campus alone, which I often do. The student body this semester is very small, the fine art majors at the American University of Rome has always been small, but this year it is almost extinct, the group consists of a combination of art history majors/minors, fine art majors/minors and me, an Interdisciplinary major with a focus of studio art and art history.

I chose the Interdisciplinary major because I need to be in the driver’s seat of my academic career. Too often others will try to push you in a direction they see fit for you, not because it benefits you, but because it benefits them and or the establishment. It has taken me a long time to identify these forms of control, but now I can recognize it and stop it dead in its tracks and continue on my own path. I have to say recognizing this form of control and preventing non-beneficial counsel from steering me in a direction that is not productive to me is very empowering to one’s soul, it is invigorating! It is a skill set I have recently acquired within the past five years of my life and I am still refining it, it is a tool in my ever-growing tool box. It is not to say that these forms of suppression have not been advantageous to me. {This does not mean that I am okay with any form of suppression or oppression!} The suppressors have created a fighter in me, my voice as an artist has intensified! Concepts manifest often as well as new ideas and topics for further research. Strength, female empowerment, feminism and a continued determination to stand up for myself has become visible in my artistic practice. Prints that call to mind female strength, symbolism and how I interact as a contemporary female visual artist is now centrical to my printmaking process.

            My cobalt blue prints began as a tester print, I needed to figure out if the carving on the linocut was complete. The bright bold blue hue in contrast with fresh white paper activated many sensations in me. The blue dose not recede it draws me in, in a hypnotic sense. From new beginnings, to a calming restful effect. The cobalt blue print excited me, it is minimal but at the same time the magnetism achieved is fascinating to me. I will continue to explore this inspiring narrative.


With a thought of self love in mind I purchased 2 bunches of peonies for myself. I’m a big believer of self-love and partake in the practice often, but I hadn’t purchased blooms for myself in quite a while.  So last Sunday while out at the farmers market perusing flower stands, these lovely peonies caught my eye. I have not painted many flowers because it is very difficult, and I do not have a lot of experience painting them.  But I love flowers and would like to incorporate floral painting into my body of work.

I purchased two bunches one in a medium shade of pink and the other in white. Once home I clipped the bottoms filled the vase up with water and began arranging the peonies for my still life painting.

Next, I set up my work-space by overloading my dining room table with; oil paints, brushes, painting medium, mineral spirits and palette paper. Now I’m ready to mix paints.

Now for the fun part mixing paints!

When I was in middle school my mother taught elementary at the same school. So after school I would go to her classroom and pull out all of her paints and mix colors.  I loved mixing white with the primary colors to create pastel version of them.  I would mix red and white to create pinks and white with blue to create shades of blue.  I went through a lot of white!!!

As I write this post the smell of summer drifts into my creative space. The weather today is perfect and my neighbors are starting to BBQ. As I look out my window I see palm trees blowing in the wind softly, the sky is a touch darker and bit warmer than the light blue shade on my pallet above. Its time for me to go outside! So I’ll wrap this up.

When I first decided to paint my peonies, I knew I wanted a dark background that evoked emotion, passion and mystery.

Self-love is a ritual that everyone should participate in because no one will take better care of you than you. You must first love yourself.

#selflove #firstlove