William had a language all his own-verbal communication was limited. I worried about Autism until I found he had dyslexia as I do. William developed a bond with a huge rabbit, Harvey, they were inseparable. A rabbit is as non-verbal as William was; still communication existed between them, a magical silent trust. As a child, I spent endless days observing wild animals. My vision was a magical moment when trust would come. These animals would become my special friends, lying down beside me. Remember, having dyslexia, silent communication, through observation and shared trust, was easier than words. Stumbling upon an opening in the woods' canopy, sunlight spotlighted a patch of ground. This small patch of earth, carpeted with pine needles was more beautiful than imagined visions. I would be transposed to a magical sacred spot. Anything seemed possible. This was my Secret Garden. “The Secret Garden”, by Burnett, is about friendship, determination, and perseverance, about the healing powers of the mind. About a locked garden, where roses, though neglected, were not dead, a place of fertility and re-growth. As the garden blossomed, so too did the children who worked there, recognizing its tremendous strength and power. In their imaginations-called "magic”-they held the power to transform lives. Beginning this portrait of William, I remembered this book and his first animal love, Harvey. There existed a parallel: William blossomed with his connections to animals and nature. His “magic” has come with self motivation, observation and hard work. This “magic” transformed his life and also joyously affected other lives. “William's Secret Garden”, is a portrait of my son at the beginning of his life’s journey, still locked in his non-verbal world. And the “Magic”, his quiet trusting, observant personality portends for his future.
My inspirations are from myths and cultural symbols repeated throughout history connecting disparate people. The South’s rich cultural history mixed with my enthusiastic pursuit of cultural mythology- especially Native American creation myths- has given me endless inspiration for my animal sculptures wrapped in mythical themes. I’ve been lucky to be born in an era of global communication and to have the opportunity to travel the world. My style reflects my belief that life needs to be celebrated with whimsy and attitude. I use the flow of lines and surface patterns to create positive and negative spaces in my sculpture. This creates movement and balance between the parts. Everything has serious and whimsical dimensions. I look for the underlying joy in the world to express in my sculpture.