Mirror Mirror
Acrylic on canvas
11 X 14 inches

My weight has been an issue all my life. At first it was a defense mechanism, then it became a familiar though uncomfortable part of my identity. I couldn't figure out how to separate myself from it. Recently I discovered that my weight no longer serves its purpose and I don't need it to protect myself. I've learned that I can use my voice, and actual words, to stand up for myself instead of relying on this physical barrier for safety.
The truth is though, I am neither of the images in this painting. I'm not defined by my shape but by my strength, my values, and my actions. My weight is a problem of health, not of identity, and I'm proud of who I am. Who I am is what I believe in. It's a shame that too often the outside world can't see in past my wrapper.

I adore painting as a way of embracing the visual narrative, as a way of telling our common story. I developed my style after struggling for years with impaired verbalization skills, caused by neurological damage from Multiple Sclerosis. When the words wouldn't come out, the images began to take shape.
My painting philosophy is that art doesn't need to be happy, but it does need to be truthful. My work tends to reflect my internal landscape and address the fears and challenges that accompany an explored life. While deeply personal, the themes are universal.