As the daughter of famed western artist, Oleg Stavrowsky, I have been around art my entire life. I knew when I was eight that I wanted to be an artist. I was drawing a tree with crayons and was overwhelmed with the joy of making any shapes and colors I wanted. That was the first time I remember having that now familiar, super-charged feeling that creating art gave me. It was almost like electricity running through my body. I loved seeing what would come from my hand next and enjoying how it all looked. At 14 I told my dad that I wanted to start painting. He told me once I'd learned to draw really well, he'd get me some acrylic paints and brushes, and that's how I started. I sold my first painting at 16 and made a career of it after that, switching to oils a few years later. It was a wonderful way to make a living, and I had the great advantage of having a studio in my home, so I could be there while raising my kids. My art won many awards, and it was a life I relished and am very honored to have been able to live. At around the age of 30 I started having some trouble with the oil paints and solvents that I'd used for so long. That got worse and worse, and eventually I had to stop using them altogether. I've tried water soluble oils, but they also have a bad effect on me. Eventually I came to the conclusion that I just couldn't use oils any more. I tried using acrylics again for a while, but really didn't like them. I decided to go into graphic design and advertising, and eventually became a speech-language pathologist. Though I kept my hand in art in different ways, I left the world of painting altogether for about twenty years. Throughout the years I dabbled in other art forms, like building furniture, photography, decorating, and gardening, and I've always loved seeing the art of others, but I really missed painting. My father continually asked me when I was going to start painting again, and after switching to acrylics himself, he convinced me that they were vastly improved over what they had been years earlier. One day I couldn't stand not painting any more, and went out and bought everything I needed to dive in again. I've been amazed at how much of what I'd learned as an oil painter was still right there 20 years later. It's been a challenge using a new medium, and I'm still learning, but there are actually some things about acrylics that I like better than oils. I'm having the time of my life creating new pieces and, as always, I love being able to record so much of what I see as beautiful about the world, in my paintings. My kids are grown and I have three beautiful grandchildren. I'm fortunate to live in the beautiful northwest state of Washington with my husband, Dennis, who is the love of my life, my beloved dogs and other special beasties. I look forward to many more years of painting and seeing what life has to offer.