As a lifelong artist, from finger-painting to plein air, I have always been drawn to beauty. When you learn to draw and paint you have to start by using subjects: people, fruit, vases, mountains, sunsets etc. and finding unexpected beauty in these everyday things is why I make art. Although my art still uses my surroundings as a backdrop, the meaning is evolving and I owe that growth to design. Until 2005 I was blind to graphic design, but that year when I stayed with an art director cousin in Amsterdam for a spell it exploded into my field of vision, consuming it up to the present day. My studies in Art History meant I knew that ideas were an equally powerful form of art, but executing a conceptual vision into something real is not as simple as making a screen-print of a campbell's soup can no matter how many people claim their "kid could have made that". It was/is design that opened my mind to storytelling with visuals and gave me an arena to practice and improve on my ability to communicate an idea or emotion. After years of focusing on how to speak visually to large audiences as a designer while continuing to make art, the lines have blurred. Design has increased my field of vision, making me appreciate the beauty of connecting with people rather than merely pursuing personal interests. Evoking feeling from a viewer is my current definition of both art and design, which is why it would be nice if the two industries could kiss and make up because there is much to gain from the union of the practical and the sensational.