My parents returned to Alaska in 1964 after the Big earthquak as my dad was a plumber and there was a lot of work to be had. I started in 1st grade that winter at Nunaka Valley Elementary School.
We were fortunate to live in Anchorage Alaska when it was still a small town and kids were free to roam the streets and woods without worries other than the wildlife. I spent as much time as I could out in the wilderness whether on horseback or just hiking and roaming in the woods. I learned to love the wildlife and beauty around me.
By the time I finished with high school Anchorage had changed from the small town that I had known. So I left and moved to the small village of Talkeetna, Alaska where I met my wonderful husband Jesse. We have lived and loved in this little village for 35+ wonderful years.
I have always loved animals and have attempted to portray them in many different mediums.
I started doing stained glass in the late 70s, drawing my own patterns, and continued until early arthritis in my right hand forced me to give it up. After surgery on my thumb to remove a bone and a year recovery to get my hand back I began to search for ways to express my art again. I took up the weaving of grass baskets but it soon became apparent that the arthritis in my other hand would not let me continue to pursue that medium.
In November of 2010 I was invited to a pastel class by a friend. I told her I was "not that kind of artist" I can't draw! she talked me into it anyway. When I picked up my first pastel, I found my passion. It was a medium that allowed me to portray animals in the way that I have always desired. I am still amazed and pleased by the gift that God has given me!
I hope that my art conveys some of the beauty of the wonderful creatures and world around us.
Laurie Cartwright 2012