I've always been working on some sort of creative effort. My first foray into the formal art world was the Famous Artists School, a correspondence course that gave me the confidence to continue studying art. I was living in a tiny North Idaho community and began painting with friends and took classes from other local artists. I eventually took some classes at local universities, but majored in education and history. When my two sons were young, I discovered soft-sculpture and porcelain casting. I sculpted clay heads, made molds, and cast them as porcelain dolls. I also painted free-hand on muslin. Two of those cloth dolls, Mondale and Reagan, appeared on the NBC Today show on election morning. We recently moved to Lincoln City, where I now focus on oil painting, working from my own photos or plein air, with the goal of honing my personal style.The artists' work I admire most include Joaquin Sorolla, the California Impressionists, and contemporary artists Erin Hansen and Dreama Tolle Perry. And, the anonymous artists that painted the cave walls of Altamira, Spain several thousand years ago. As a young student learning Basque in the Pyrenees, I saw those paintings, and think they have never been surpassed. I remind myself that painting in oils has a very long tradition!