Alicia B.| Artist | Jerry's Shopper
"I've had the innate love of creating art since as far back as I can remember. My older sister teases me that I liked drawing so much, that when I was 3 years old, I climbed over her bed and ate her crayons that she had tried to hide from me. So, if I take my sister's view on things, you could say that art is truly within me. I still have a great many drawings from early elementary school all the way through college. During my early 20s and 30s, however, due to things I had no real control over, my passion for art dwindled.
In a nut shell the events leading up to the turmoil began when I was 7 years old. Around 1983 I was diagnosed with psoriasis. Shortly thereafter my pediatrician retired. The first time I remember immense pain was in 4th grade but it wasn't until I was 22 that I was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis. I was told for 15+ years that I had growing pains and I'd get over it. Essentially, I was told that I was seeking attention, as well as, "just" fat and lazy. During my 30s, I had my left knee replaced (and it doesn't work and still causes pain), both hips were replaced, and I went on permanent disability. I think losing the ability to work full time hurt worse than the physical pain at the time. It was actually my manager who ultimately convinced me to file for disability because she couldn't stand seeing me in so much pain every day nor how much effort it took to do even the smaller tasks in the office.
Eventually things began to improve, at least mentally and emotionally as I came to terms with my health. Physically, I have other joints that are bone on bone and ambulate with either forearm crutches or a wheelchair. In 2015, I fell in love and through some of my social interactions with my boyfriend, I was introduced to a local professional artist who quickly became my friend.
My new artistic friend wanted to see some of my previous drawings and paintings. He convinced me to take part in the next local art walk. I had serious doubts and reservations, but he was kind enough to be there for me every step of the way. Also, during this time another new friend convinced me to start going to a free watercolor study group in a neighboring town. It's a group that meets every Tuesday morning where local artists get together to socialize while creating their own artwork. Since then, I've met many wonderful new friends and artists who have further solidified the rekindling of my passion for art.
I'm now addicted to art again and enjoy creating in a multitude of mediums including: watercolor, acrylic, colored pencil, graphite, pastels, ink, marker, mixed media, and some photography. I once again found my childhood creativity and pretty much live, breathe, and dream art once more."
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