I was born in New Orleans and raised in St. Charles Parish. My Paw Paw was a sign painter by profession and artist. Art was something I was always around and something I loved from my earliest memories.
I recall during my grammar school years, between school and gymnastics, I would draw gymnasts and other people. I would bring my drawing to my Paw Paw as he relaxed in his recliner. He would critique my work by offering advise and suggestions on how to improve my drawing and shading skills. I can remember watching in amazement as he drew cartoon characters for me. He would create wonderful images in seconds which back then would take me hours to draw.
My interest in art significantly increased while I attended Archbishop Chapelle High School. I had wonderful instructors who inspired me to go beyond what I thought were my limitations. At this time I was able to greatly improve my abilities with pencil and charcoal. Throughout the next several years, I had various jobs that had nothing to do with art but I never lost my desire to create and draw. I was commissioned to draw murals for businesses in the New Orleans area, sketched out t-shirt designs for other entities and I even painted slates for the Ursuline Sisters.
While attending the University of New Orleans, I came to enjoy using acrylic paints. While at UNO, I studied art, marketing and history graduating with a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies.
I've always been interested in live event paintings for weddings. I purchased an easel 12 years ago for this exact reason but never used it. It wasn't until a friend who heard me talk about my desire to paint live multiple times offered for me to paint her wedding. Within that same week, another friend who worked for a wedding venue, asked if I would like to paint their open house. That is where NOLA Live Painting began.
Painting live has been the most enjoyable and exciting adventure. It's something I have been dreaming of doing for the past 10 years and it has blossomed into a wonderful career. I give all the credit to my husband, family and friends for helping me follow my dreams.
Photo courtesy of Collin Richie