How we see ourselves can change. Either radically through trauma or slowly through time and aging. The hope is that we can come to realize that we are beautiful at every stage. And at every age. 

I wanted one panel to represent what we think of as beautiful and how we see ourselves. Like looking through a broken mirror, our vision can be distorted because see see through our experiences and our idiosyncrasies.

Broken Vessel #6 / Beauty 


And no….cutting through her face with a saw was not difficult.  It made the image so much stronger. Here is a glimpse and the first cut across this painting. I drew the lines on where I wanted them with a yellow pastel pencil so I just followed the saw along those lines.


Told ya there kicked up a lot of sawdust! And yes, that is me laughing at the end of that first cut….hehe….Trust me, it was very therapeutic…..

What is beauty? It is so subjective. All I know is that when I see someone smile, they are suddenly beautiful. 

We are so hard on ourselves. I remember when I was in my twenties and always thinking about how fat I was. I look back at photos of myself from that time period and now I wish I was that “fat.” How we see ourselves changes. 

My model identifies with both genders. And I love that. Beauty is found in both male and female. (I love drawing the male nude. Think of classical Roman and Greek sculpture-  it was a pursuit of beauty.) And my model is of many nationalities as well. Russian, Philipino, African-American and Slovak. I wanted this model to represent all of us. Every variant. And then I wanted to cut right through their face. Shattering how we see ourselves as though viewing ourselves in a cracked mirror. 

Here are videos of the pieces coming back together…




We have to accept who we are. See the beauty in us. Put the pieces of self-awareness back together and realize we are valuable. Beautiful. But it is a struggle to heal and accept who we are especially after trauma, illness, divorce, or physical injury. Or time.


So that’s the first six paintings. The other 6 panels represent trust, hope, faith, innocence, endurance, and finding our identity. (self-portrait, that one) I’ll share photos from the gallery opening next week and then I will also share the next 6 paintings over the next 6 weeks in this blog after that. 

The show opens this Saturday night at the Christine Frechard Gallery in Lawrenceville in Pittsburgh PA. 5126 Butler Street Pittsburgh, PA 15201. 5 – 8pm.

Eeek!!! Its almost here! I really, really hope to see you there! I am sharing the space with my good friend and brilliant painter, Patrick Lee. I have interviewed and shared his work before in this blog so you will definitely enjoy seeing his work up close too.  

And if you can’t visit the show, I have a hard-bound book of the entire series available to anyone that wants a copy.  All 12 panels are included along with the stories of each painting and why it was cut up in its particular way. Each book is 11 x 14” and the cost is $125. Shipping is $15 and I will sign the book and ship it to you wherever you are! Contact me with your address at [email protected].  I will be happy to send you one.

Please join me Saturday night. You may see yourself as well as fellow Pittsburghers along the walls. We are all healing from something and that golden glint on your neighbor says we are all the same.  

See ya then….


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