When we find someone with whom to share our lives, we are fortunate. When artists do so, they are especially blessed. At least that’s the case with the four artist couples we interviewed for this article.
For most of us, we were attracted to our spouses, or significant others, for a variety of reasons: their physical appearance—which might simply be a great smile—their sincerity, sense of humor, intelligence, talent, or kindness. For the artists we talked with, there are other, equally important attributes, including respect for each other’s work and a shared passion for art.
– Sherrie McGraw and David Leffel
– John Moyers and Terri Kelly Moyers
– Brian Blood and Laurie Kersey
– Scott Burdick and Susan Lyon
Aotw Misc Photos
The Beauty of the Dance
“We met 40 years ago and were soul mates from the start.” That’s how Sherrie and David describe their relationship, which had its start at the Art Students League in New York City. “My teacher in Oklahoma suggested that I study with David at the League,” Sherrie says. “I also took Frank Mason’s and Dan Greene’s classes, but decided that David was teaching what I wanted to learn. His approach was holistic, not fragmented.”
Sherrie McGraw (New Mexico)
South of Taos
John and Terri met in 1979, while painting at the Okanagan Game Farm in British Columbia. “He was this tall, skinny, blonde, guy,” Terrie says. “He was—and is—a nice guy.” The two forged a friendship that evolved into romance and celebrated their 36th anniversary in September. During the first four or five years of their marriage, the couple painted in the same studio. It wasn’t an ideal situation, but it was workable.
Terri Kelly Moyers
The Three Graces
Morning Shadows at Point Lobos
Brian and Laurie met in 1997 at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, California. “I saw a display in a showcase window on the street that stopped me in my tracks,” Laurie says. “It was promoting a landscape painting class that Brian was teaching, and I signed up.” The two artists have been together for 20 years now and have been married for 16. They work in separate studios at their home
Susan was exposed to Scott’s artwork and his reputation before she actually met the artist who would become her partner in life. After viewing his work and listening to the praise of his former instructors at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, she met Scott at the Palette and Chisel Club, where a friend as posing during an open painting session. Scott recalls that meeting well, even though it took place almost three decades ago.
Juanita With Red Ribbons