meet the artist behind Bender Originals

          I started painting and drawing lessons at the ripe old age of five. Once a week I would go to my teacher's house and learn how to “really see” the world around me. I learned how to notice that the grass was not one but seven different shades of green and that my peach skin had shades of blue and purple in it.

          When I was little, it was my play time, my game to see if I was tricked by what I thought something should look like or if I could draw what was actually before my eyes. As I grew into a teenager, it was my refuge. Each week I could count on that time to let everything flow out of me in a constructive way. A lot of teenage angst was hung up on my bedroom walls in those days!

          In college had access to classes at School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. I took full advantage! Sculpture, oil painting, life drawing... I maxed out my credits with whatever I could register for.

          When I transitioned into the working world, my art was something private. It was a way for me to unwind, work through situations, remember experiences. When friends asked if I would ever pursue a career in art I would always decline, saying “Oh no, it's just a hobby!”

          Life moved on and I moved. There was grad school, a husband, two babies... and dozens of moves. After living in three countries and four states, I finally unpacked my paints for the last time to settle down in the beautiful mountains of Colorado. It is hard not to feel inspired here.

But what changed, you may ask?

          Why did I decide to transform my artwork into a full-time business? I think the short answer to that question is that I settled down in these beautiful surroundings and finally settled into myself as an artist. Somewhere along the way I got the message that life is precious and short. We are constantly balancing work life and family life, responsibilities and hobbies, children's needs and our own. I realized I want to spend my time doing what makes me truly happy and makes me feel connected and whole. I hope that my art helps others reconnect and feel moved in their own lives.

          Maybe one of my brightly colored paintings acts as a gentle reminder to take the time to enjoy the sunset that day, or one of my darker one confirms that we are not alone in our pain. Each connection is intensely personal and powerful. And I am grateful to have made this choice- to share these experiences with people through my art.