Capital T, capital F - The Farm. Located in the heart of South Texas, an hour and a half southwest of Houston, it’s set on roughly 80 acres of the the gentlest rolling land. Nearly-historic oak trees and stately groves of pecan trees grow their roots in its ground. And on a cloudless night, the sky is the clearest window to the stars that you can’t find within big city limits. It started as a place where my family could keep their hands busy and scratch the itch to get out of the city. What I didn’t expect was that it would change my life and my artwork in the best way.
The Farm came into my life freshman year of TCU. I was a budding art student pushing all kinds of boundaries with my work - cake slices revealing new worlds within! Waterfalls gushing from conch shells! Some pretty earth-shattering stuff, right? Ha. Then I went to Italy for a semester, which I wouldn’t trade for anything, but came back a little tired of cherubs and Renaissance Italian dignitaries, so I started painting abstract paintings.My dad began beekeeping at The Farm, so the honeycomb shape became the basis of this period of abstracts. They kept me busy for a semester, but I knew they wouldn’t be “my thing.” Still, slowly, The Farm was creeping into my work.
Then junior year came. I had to start considering how I was going to take my art major into the real world. I started getting scared, nervous, and unsure. During this time of uncertainty, I started going to The Farm more often. It felt safe and certain, like home. I was drawn to the wide skies, the changing light, and how the same place can look different depending on the time of day, the weather and the temperature.
Curiosity got the best of me, and I used the photos I took at The Farm back to the painting studio, finished my first landscape painting, and haven’t looked back since.
Since that first landscape painting, a lot has changed: I graduated, I chose to pursue my art seriously, and I got married. But one thing that hasn’t changed? The Farm. The magnetic pull of the slower pace, the fresh air, and the big Texas sky always draws me in at the right time. Painting my favorite views from The Farm became my escape, so that, even when I was in the city, in the thick of whatever was happening, I could look at the painting and take myself back to that place and time.
And that’s exactly what I want these paintings to be to whoever they belong to - an exhale, a place of rest. Wherever your happy place is, whether it’s a physical location, a time in your life, or even a person, my hope is that these paintings take you there. Maybe it’s just me, but having a deep longing for somewhere/someone/sometime that a part of your heart belongs to makes day-to-day routines more meaningful. I feel that I’m working towards the day when I can hop in the car and make the drive to a place that might be the middle of nowhere to some people, but is everywhere to me.