I grew up on a farm in central Minnesota, but had a hard time fitting in with a family who experts in farming and had little to no knowledge of art. I did not know at the time, I would use the knowledge I gained on growing plants in my later life.
In my early 20s I left the farm and was lucky to live in the twin cities were I took a few art classes, like drawing, and painting. The classes helped to know more on the procedures and necessities which helped my knowledge of art techniques grow. Even with the classes taken I continued to read and gain more knowledge from books of great artists around the world.
I took a calligraphy class in the late 70s which began my passion for the history of humans’ communication. My home studies along with research lead me to discover papyrus and its preparation. In the 1990’s my husband, (Alex Koomen) and I went to the Netherlands to visit his family and our friends. During our visit we toured some galleries and museums; we were fortunate to find and old document written around Napoleon Bonaparte’s time which had the Egyptians recipe for how they prepared papyrus for script.
The Egyptians had held their secrets in the preparation of papyrus for many years because they had the market on the early material which was easier to prepare and use for written communication. It was easier and took less time to prepare sheets of papyrus than the Europeans parchment and until pulp paper spread across the oceans to the Earths’ masses the Egyptians kept their secrets.
Today, with my knowledge the preparation of papyrus as well as the art of farming, I use my own water based farm to grow my own papyrus and prepare my own canvas for my original works.
Each year I come up with a new design through my passion of art history, the year gives me enough time to come up with a new design. My admiration for artists’ like M. C. Eischer inspire my work, that along with my life journey through lose and new beginnings has helped me find peace and bring together my work and expression of my inner self.
My passion for the arts has brought me along way to a place that allows me to express and share my compassion for mans history as well as my spiritual experiences in life.
I grow and prepare my papyrus here in Alabama. Then through the use of my research and teachings I design my paintings in a Byzantine, Celtic, or Medieval style through my use of watercolor and pen-and-ink.
As many others, my life journey includes the loss of a loved one, my daughter Edien. This led me to the painting of the Arch Angle Raphael whose story helped comfort me and helps others find peace with their own losses.