Theresa has been painting as far back as she can remember. Her mother is a painter and her grandmother painted on porcelain.
Theresa earned her BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute.
Originally, studying design and illustration, she also studied painting under Wilbur Niewald; America’s foremost Impressionist painter. She learned the techniques and philosophy of the Impressionists, “Paint what you see,” and began painting en plein air.
She moved to New York City for intense studies of the human figure at the New York Academy of Art; earning an MFA in 1992.
NYAA is where she learned the painting techniques and philosophies of the Renaissance painters. Her style is a combination of these two major movements.
So what does a highly trained twenty-something artist do in the big apple to make money after she graduates?
She walks into the local mom and pop pizzerias and pastry shops and convinces the owners that store bought, holiday cut-outs from the local drug store has to end!
Life size figures of Santa flying through the air with 8 reindeer or stepping through giant Easter egg doors is how to make their windows shine and sparkle and dazzle all the locals.
On any given day during the month of November and December you will find her painting from the inside at a variety of businesses throughout New York City. (She’s no fool, it’s too cold to paint outside at this time) She uses acrylic paint, outlines the images and colors them in. That way, when the sun hits the windows they look like stained glass and can be seen from either the inside or out.
In 2000 she signed her first contract as a licensed artist. Licensed art is an agreement between the artist and the manufacturer to reproduce your images on their products.
The manufacturer then sells to retail outlets and the artist receives royalties based on retail sales. The artist retains the original artwork.
Just for fun, sometimes Theresa would walk through stores like Bed Bath & Beyond to see if people were buying her “Ripe from the Vine” oven mitts, floor matts and aprons. Being that fly on the wall really is fun! Who doesn’t like to hear strangers comment on how much they love your work?
During the summer of 2015, Theresa painted two gates for the Lower East Side 100 Gates – Public Works -project. She may not be twenty-something anymore but she can stand on top of a ladder at midnight on the lower east side, finish the task and go home in one piece.
As with many working artists of today’s era, Theresa has been learning how to use the new tools that exist; including the Adobe suite programs. After two years of laboring through workshops and continuing education classes she finally had that light bulb moment, “I understand layers!” now she can make her agent happy with her ability to cut, paste and add lettering to her commercial work for today’s retail market.