Sunday, April 12, 2009



Explore the world of healing with me at Woodloft, my home nestled in the woods of Virginia’s Roanoke Valley near the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Healing takes place on many different levels. In this blog, I will share my stories of artful healing with you through my four books as well as through my clay sculptures, mosaics, journals, clay planters, acrylic paintings, jewelry, frescos, garden art, labyrinths, quilts, stained and crashed glass, goddess cream, Healing Woman soaps, and herbal lore.

Almost all of my artwork uses faces and figures of angels, goddesses and crones to express the emotional life of humanity. I hope to inspire you to create your own artful healing.


B-DAZLE! I have always felt that anything worth owning, is worth naming. Yes, believe it or not, this is my 1989 Nissan car, B-Dazle. I have placed florist globs, tile, washers and beads over her entire surface. She took 6 years to complete.



I drive her only on the weekends when I display my artwork at the Roanoke Farmer's Market. I used aquarium glue (because it is waterproof) to adhere the 23,000 beads and bangles. My granddaughter, Marcy, and her friends actually counted every bead and bangle for a contest held last summer at WVTF Radio in Roanoke. The station holds regular shows of work by local artists. B-Dazle greeted visitors to the opening of my show, “Angels, Goddesses and Crones.”

The contest challenged everyone to guess the number of beads and bangles. The winning guess of 17,000 won one of my Goddess Ceremonial Necklaces for a guest of the show.

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Many people have asked me if they can purchase my car, but until I start another one, I cannot bear to part with her. I began to work on B-dazle in the year 2000. My mother, Jane, was living with me at the time because Alzheimer’s Disease had made it impossible for her to live on her own. The situation made me unable to exhibit my work on the art show circuit I had frequented for so many years. Not only did I miss the art shows, but I was also unable to work on my sculpture and other art projects because Mom needed my undivided attention. So, I decided to create something that mom could enjoy watching me do. I had her sit on an outdoor chair and view the show -- me being the show of course -- as I slowly but surely added those many embellishments (often with the aid of a nice glass of merlot).

Whenever I took my mother out to walk, to shop, or to do any of the things she was still able to do, I noticed that people seemed to avoid looking at her at all. It was as though no one wanted to see an old woman in decline. It saddened me to think that she had given so much to her friends and family, that she loved people so much, that she had been so vivacious and entertaining, that she had tap-danced her way into everyone’s heart, and now she was ignored. It was as though to be old and debilitated was to be a kind of a non-person. B-dazle changed all that.

During the many stages of B-dazle’s evolution, Mom would sit in the passenger seat, all buckled in, and we would peruse the local shops.

I was delighted that as we drove around, almost everyone who passed us would give mom a “thumbs up” and a smile. In turn, she would flash a big grin and enjoy her outings in ways I hadn't expected. It brought a lot of joy to her life in her last years, and in many ways, brought a special kind of healing to us both.

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