Betsy headshot 177x251


I confess it:

The truth is, I first learned I was an artist from a San Francisco Bay area psychic.

At the time, I didn’t even own a paint brush, but fortunately, I took her “you-have-a-gift, use-it-or-lose-it” message seriously.  Slowly, but seriously.

Today I can see that I’ve been an artist all along, but this wasn’t always the case.  In fact, it wasn’t until I was in my 30s, when that psychic first broached the subject.  I was young and inexperienced in the ways of the psyche;  she was Italian and very pregnant.

“Oh, so you’re an artist?” she asked midway through my reading.

“No, why?” I responded as I watched her expression change from cosmic to confused.

“Well…” she began, “I see many extraordinary paintings, beautiful work, but I caution that you must learn and use your gifts.  Very important!”

Of course–or amazingly– she was right.  It took a few more years for me to get up the courage to buy art supplies, and more still to learn how to use them.  Art for me is often about courage; not work, but guts and bravery.

Also, it’s about finding humor, and irony, and about irreverence and about play.  It’s very much about an excavation of my psyche, discovering layers like an archeologist digs, and about using color and texture as my preferred vehicles for that.

My progression was from watercolor and pastels to oil paint. Then a workshop at Haystack in Maine helped germinate my mixed media artist self. And when I discovered encaustic painting, I finally had a profound sense of “coming home,” of finding, finally after so many years of mixed dabbling, my artistic home base.

Since then, I have been consistently, sometimes obsessively, working with wax and most days I feel like the luckiest of dogs to have discovered such a compatible medium and process for my artistic forays into the subconscious.