As a young child and during school years, I enjoyed drawing and spent many hours filling pages with cowboys, horses, cactus, Saturn, rocket ships, people, and mountains.  I loved art classes offered in high school, and took one drawing class at the University of Utah (while pursuing my elementary education degree). However, in the years that followed, my life was full and busy with marriage, six children, teaching piano lessons, volunteering in schools, church work, and running a household.

When my children were all in school, I began working full time. and  also earned a masters degree in computer information systems. In 2004, I returned to education and taught third grade for the next 14 years.

When I  retired at the end of May 2018,  I started working with colored pencils in earnest. I read Alyona Nickelson’s book, The Colored Pencil Painting Bible. To say that I was amazed doesn’t do justice to my feelings of excitement at what was possible with colored pencils. With an old box of twenty-four Prismacolor pencils I had bought years earlier,  I set up a space in the laundry room to start working through the detailed tutorials in Alyona’s book.  I purchased on worked through other tutorials as well, trying to build up my skills.

I began drawing on my own by doing portraits of each of my 18 grandchildren. To encourage other beginning artists, I have created a Gallery section for these first portraits.   I continued to read books, completed dozens of additional tutorials, subscribed to magazines, bought more pencils, tried different supports, joined several Facebook colored pencil artist groups, and kept drawing…and drawing.

I am most grateful to the many accomplished colored pencil artists who share their their knowledge, experiences, and superb artwork(for more info see Resources pages)

I’m grateful as well  my incredibly accomplished artist son, Bryan.  He always has something positive and encouraging to say about each new drawing or painting that I complete.  I admire his professionalism, incredible work ethic, and devotion to perfection.  You can check out his amazing work at

I still have so much to learn and I am excited to continue to refine and hone my skills. Thank you for sharing that journey with me.

Studio update – many thanks to Nathan