I awoke out of deep sleep early one morning in 2010, sat straight up, and with an urgency I cannot explain to this very day, uttered four words: ‘I have to paint’! I know that those words came from my heart because, being freshly awake, I had not yet engaged my mind.

I had an appreciation for the fine arts to be sure. When the Houston Museum of Fine Art’s Audrey Jones Beck building opened on March 25, 2000, I made sure to be there. I remember that beautiful Spring day even now. The new building itself was quite impressive on its own; yet inside, the extraordinary works that I beheld captivated me in a way I did not expect. In that same year, I would visit our nation’s Capital the week of July 4th. To my delight, in addition to the many outstanding places of interest that we know, there are more than 200 museums and galleries! My love affair, as it were, with fine art officially began. Even so, the idea of picking up a brush to paint myself had not occurred to me.

On the drive to work that morning, I looked around to whatever my eyes saw and imagined how to paint it…clouds, trees, landscapes, everything! For the first time, I was viewing my surroundings through new and exciting lenses. Over the next month or so, the desire to paint did not diminish. It grew! A short time later, I visited Texas Art Supply Store on Voss Road, and, making my way to the back of the store, saw a small group of women in a room painting. I peeked inside and spoke with the teacher, who invited me to bring my own supplies and join the group any time I wanted!

Ten years later, I continue to be grateful that God Sent me to Texas Art that day so He could join me to a teacher with a scope of knowledge broad enough that allowed us as students to work in any medium we wished (as well as any subject)!

Before I joined the class, however, I purchased some watercolors and, with not much more than enthusiasm, painted the picture you see here. I would learn soon after that watercolor is the least forgiving medium! Oh well, I didn’t know any better. Anyway, here is the result; which has remained unnamed to this day. Wait a minute. It has a name now: “First”

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