Growing up with an artist /chef father likely had a strong influence on my artistic direction in life. Although my father had a busy career as a head chef in several large hotels in Toronto he managed to find time to paint in his spare time; landscapes, figures and animals. It was my father who introduced me to oil painting at a young age, setting me up with a set of Reeves oil paints and a small wooden box to carry them in. Throughout my childhood I would try other media that my father had lying around such as oil and chalk pastels and pen and ink. My preferred subjects were always animals back then, often my pets. And if ever asked, I was going to be an artist when I grew up.
However, in high school a decision had to be made. Would I pursue the arts or decide on a career in the natural sciences? I was a huge animal and nature lover so it made sense to me to pursue the sciences and keep art as a hobby. I did just that. I majored in Zoology in university and graduated with an MSc landing my first job in medical research and then another in Forensics. But despite them being interesting jobs I never really felt satisfied. I dreamt of painting, planning what I would paint on the weekend. As time went on and I had a family it got harder to find the time to paint. That was when I would take courses and workshops, knowing that I could have uninterrupted time to paint that way. The more I painted the more I desired to paint, to experiment and improve.
I can happily say I am now, and have been for several years, a full time artist and have never been happier. I believe being an artist was my destiny.