About Me

 
I help surface designers and licensing artists move past the design constraints of physical media, and ditch the “rules” of the software programs they use.

I can show you how to use the full creative potential of Photoshop to craft exciting images and patterns.

Adobe Photoshop is sometimes under-estimated, under-utilized and misunderstood by textile artists…

but this powerful software package can help you achieve more than you can even imagine.

You just need someone to show you what’s possible and how to get it done.

That’s me…

Along the way, I share great working methods to make it easier for you to design more marketable artwork faster, and teach how you can easily reuse and repurpose bits of your designs in other artwork.

Yes, I agree, this is a rather specialist niche – and it’s taken a great deal of happenstance and joyful coincidences to bring me to this point.

My Story…

  • Photoshop expert/teacher/author
  • surface pattern designer
  • bead and fiber artist, spinner and knitter
  • lover of Broadway musicals

I’ve had “craft” in my fingers since I first learnt to knit when I was eight years old. Over the years, I’ve knit, crocheted, spun yarn, beaded with tiny seed beads, and done needlepoint and mixed media experimental embroidery. I’ve woven on both tapestry and 4-harness looms, and until my back gave out, I liked to sew my own clothes. In the 1970s, I had a needlework shop in Philadelphia where my business partner and I both designed canvases and provided kits for the gift shop at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

I trained as a teacher and taught World Culture and European history for several years before my son was born. I’ve taught everything from history to ballet, knitting, crochet, management information systems, systems analysis, database design, QuarkExpress, prepress, and Photoshop in locations as diverse as the local recreation centre, evening school, the university, and online. In the process, I have learnt to teach in ways that make it easy for students to understand.

It was my teaching Information Systems at the university that allowed me to become one of the first recipients of a brand new program called Photoshop 1.0 in 1990 – yes, I’ve been using Photoshop for almost 30 years.

As I got more deeply involved with the Photoshop community (both as an author, a magazine columnist, and a moderator on the Adobe Compuserve Support forum), I had the chance to meet and interact with some of the most influential people who contributed to Photoshop. I took part in the first discussions that resulted in the JPG image format and in the first musings about Colour Profiles. And I learned from everyone I met.

By 2012, I was ripe for a new adventure. We moved from our home of 34 years to the seaside resort community where we now live. I started spinning yarn again (using an amazing electric spinner that was light enough for me to lift). I started selling spinning fibre online, and from those connections, I discovered that technology now made it possible to design patterns and have them printed in limited yardage amounts (Hello, Spoonflower!).

That bit of knowledge brought me almost back to where I started—designing repeat patterns. From finding Moyo online, another accident, I joined Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design and Make Art that Sells, and met the most amazing community. I also found a ‘home’ at Pattern Observer.

The artists I met not only made me feel welcome, they seemed to greatly need my knowledge of Photoshop. I spent a large part of those early courses providing Photoshop help (and Illustrator help as well) for anyone who asked me. It was then that I realised that I had finally found what I most wanted to do and where my talents could best be of use. I wanted to design my own patterns and to serve the design community as a guide and fellow-adventurer in the world of Photoshop.

Photoshop is a hugely popular program, and there are thousands of classes about it. Most of them are taught by photographers for photographers. But I am uniquely able to bridge that gap to translate what photographers know about Photoshop into what designers and artists need to know and I’m able to integrate the techniques from all genres of Photoshop to make designers both more productive and more creative.

 

How Can I Help You???

I can’t “give” you creativity, or teach you to be creative; creativity is there inside of you already. But… I can help you to reach into the depths of Photoshop with your own creativity to produce something totally original to you. But…

  • I can teach you how to use Photoshop via my online classes to suit all skill and experience levels.
  • I can work with you one-on-one to find solutions for sticky design problems or to develop new techniques to help you get work done.
  • And I can provide a community where you can meet other Photoshop design geeks, compare notes, ask for help, and brainstorm solutions and new possibilities.

 

Get to know me better, and explore some of Photoshop’s lesser known corners, by joining my free 5-day email class (Creating a Seamless Pattern from Photoshop Brushes) that’s fun regardless of your Photoshop experience level.

I believe that everyone can develop intellectual curiosity and expand the horizons of ‘possible’ and that playing is the best form of development. The more you play and look for happy accidents, the more creative energy you possess.

I want to help you make progress toward your creative goals, whatever they might be, by exploring with you the ways in which you can harness the power of Photoshop in service of your art.