Darlene Meader Riggs
I grew up next door to a rodeo and I got my first horse when I was five. I dreamed of being a Rodeo Queen and champion barrel racer but my parents had other ideas. I lived outside, loved bugs, played Tarzan (never Jane) and lived out western dramas all on my own, with my Davy Crockett knife and Daisy BB gun, riding in our pasture next to the rodeo.
I remember my first painting. First grade, a large sheet of Manila paper and primary colors in tempera paint. I painted a lamb – a black one – with a red collar. I reluctantly gave up my crayons sometime in junior high and soon after took up acrylic painting. Now I prefer oils but I dabble in watercolor. I am self-taught which used to be a minus but now feels very positive because I know that working things out for myself is really the key to heartfelt art. I paint things that jump out at me, grab my heart, twist my arm and scream “PAINT ME.” It may be a fawn, a rooster, a blossom, a sunset – they are all medicine to me I always felt that at this time, in mid-life (and yes, I do expect to live to be 120), I would be an artist. I didn’t know how it would happen, exactly, it was just a given. But something life changing happened to me a few years ago and I realized it was now...or never. And never is an ugly word.
So, all or nothing, sink or swim, I am finally being what I was meant to be.
(But I’m still working on that Rodeo Queen part, though.)
Visit her website at darlenemeaderriggs.com