Shelby McQuilkin, North Brunswick, NJ Member Since August 2014 Artist Statement I’ve been an artist since I was a little girl, but although my talent was recognized from a young age, no one encouraged me to pursue art as a career. Throughout my life’s journey, I’ve looked for different ways to release my creative energy. I’ve searched high and low for my “place” in life, and I’ve also experienced plenty of road blocks along the way.
In 2006, I was depressed and feeling completely lost. I had no energy; it was difficult to just walk across the room. I was alive, but I wasn’t living. The question came to me, “Shelby, when are you going to start living your life?” I was 40 years old and hadn’t done anything I had ever dreamed of doing.
I knew I had to find a creative outlet. I purchased a small DSLR camera and began taking pictures every day. We were living in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the time and my son would come with me and we would walk all over downtown taking pictures. I found fresh energy. When I started, I could barely walk across the room, but soon I was walking all over town.
That was just the beginning. Our family, my husband, son, and I, all realized our creativity wasn’t flourishing where we were, so we moved to Denver, Colorado. Not long after our move, I met a group of oil painters who opened their arms and invited me to paint with them. Painting had always been what I really wanted to do.
And so it began. I became obsessed with painting!! I never knew I could love doing something this much.
My art reflects my journey through life. I’m inspired by the people and events that have shaped me as well as my joys and my tribulations. Each painting is filled with my passion for life, my love of family, and my love of art. Through my life and my work, I want to encourage others to pursue their dreams and live life passionately.
"My mission as an artist is to inspire others to follow their passion and to live life to the fullest. It’s my goal to create art that touches the heart and consoles the broken hearted. It’s my hope that my work will bring a unique and beautiful statement to the home of every owner." - Shelby McQuilkin