The Fire Inside Her Burned Brighter, 1998

Oil on panel

12” x 20”

This is the oldest piece I had hanging in my solo show Couch to Canvas.

In 1997 I had returned to SUU after separating from my first husband to finish my degree in Illustration. Waiting for me there was a new art teacher, Brian Hoover, who was a visual storyteller, and the medium of oil paint which I had not previously explored much. I had originally come to school with the intent of being a teacher, children's book illustrator and author, but I never really had a story to tell. Or at least, I didn't think I did.
But now the story that needed telling was my life and it was most definitely not like the fairy tales I had been spoon fed on throughout my childhood. In this painting I was trying to show how, although I had been changed by going through a horrible marriage and divorce, I still had a hope inside of me, a fire that had not burned out, and that I was looking for healing and peace.

I honestly didn't know that that's what I was doing at the time. I was just doing it intuitively, because I had no language to talk about the things that happened to me or the hopes that still lived inside of me.
Very grateful for the gift of art that helped to keep me sane enough to keep going until I got to help that I needed to make sense of the things that happened in my life.