I view the work I create as collaborative self-reflection. By channeling and capturing the experimental humanness of the people and places that have impacted my life – those honest, raw, uncertain, and intimately vulnerable moments – I discover more about myself and am able to connect with others on an emotional level that I could never convey with words alone. While it is not always clear in my mind as to what I am doing and feeling in the moment, it is the process of working through the unknown that keeps me excited about what each painting will ultimately become. I am not trying to be overly intellectual or prescriptive in what I want someone to feel when they see the work, rather, my aim is to invite people to bring their own life experiences, histories, and unique stories into the narrative. The real beauty in what I do comes from each individual interpretation that develops within the minds of those experiencing what I create. I am inspired by the uncertainty of life. The mistakes. The bumps. The blemishes. I paint with acrylic on birch, purposely working with tools that feel unfamiliar – from traditional paintbrushes to printmaking rollers to graphite/charcoal to miscellaneous card stock shapes – which allow for mishaps and missteps to naturally occur, taking my original ideas to places I never would have envisioned. It is in this experimentation that I find the work truly begins to reveal itself. I feel that it is my responsibility to embrace the struggle that working with paint presents – the process often representing the struggles people face every day – in a way that engages the viewer with immediacy, energy, and an understanding that they will read their own meaning into each scene. Regardless of what I am painting or why I was inspired to create a particular piece, I remain driven by the infinitely colorful interpretations of my work that are articulated to me by those who are willing enough to tell me how a piece speaks to them. This, in turn, allows me to view my own work from a completely different perspective – sparking entirely new thoughts and ideas, and igniting my creative processes all over again.