Pyrography - original art by Kathleen Marie
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Fairborn Schools Hall of Honor: Career achievement, community service and high standard of character.
Inducted April 2004, Ohio
Acceptance Speech:
Kathleen Marie was recently inducted into the Fairborn Schools Hall of Honor - this is a reprint of her acceptance speech
Other Publications about Kathleen Marie

Paint Horse Journal:
Portfolio Section
March 2004 Issue

Texas Country Reporter:
CBS
February 7, 2004

Woodcarvers Ezine:
Volume 8, Issue 1
January/February 2004

Renewing the Heart:
An Avenue of Hope, God's Gift of Art, article by Nancy Slack, September 2003

Wildlife Art Magazine:
Kathleen in the May/June 2003 issue

Equestrian Magazine
Equestrian Artists
Dec. 2002 issue

Thank you Julie. She is a wonderful speaker, itís one of her God given gifts. We all have gifts, talents and passions. Everyone does. Those are the true riches that make us who we are. Each of us is made with a different mix of gifts and they are all valid. They are given to us freely yet we each have the responsibility to acknowledge and accept them. A gift must be unwrapped before it can be appreciated.

I believe that everyone is an artist deep inside. If you believe that you are made in the image of God that does not mean what you look like. God is spirit and a creative force. That spirit is the part of you that is a reflection of the Master Artist. Passion is creative energy. Thatís pretty cool to think about. We all express our creative gifts in different ways, some are obvious, and some are not so easily recognized.

Iím standing here on stage today with others who have followed their passion.

Art is the vehicle by which I express my passion for nature and creativity. Iím a bit passionate too about not going along with the crowd. Some people may confuse that with rebellion but it actually is not. It never made any sense to me when people told me that it was strange or amazing for a woman to do woodworking, build furniture, use a chain saw, build an entry door or build a bridge. I donít see how it has anything to do with gender. Iíve always had the opinion that if someone else can do something then there is no reason why I canít do it too.

Iíve come to know that you will be able to do anything that you are truly interested in. The biggest obstacles for most people are caving in to the smallness of other peopleís ideas of what is possible and being afraid of failure. The only real failure is not trying at all. Mistakes are not failures. Mistakes are experiences. I made a lot of mistakes when I was teaching myself to build furniture. In the early days of my art career I did a lot of shows that cost me more money than I made. Ha! I could tell you some good stories about those days. But the biggest mistake I made was listening to people when they told me that I should not keep trying to do woodburning. They said ĎIt was too hard, people were never going to accept it as a legitimate art form. I should just go back to working in traditional media.í So, I tried that. I started working in pen and ink and watercolor. It was boring, my heart wasnít in it. I wasnít enjoying myself. Then I started building furniture, carving, doing metal work. They were all fun but then I never had time to do art. I finally realized that woodburning was my true passion and it did not matter if it was difficult. So I went back to doing woodburning.

Success is not how much money you make but how much enthusiasm and energy you have to share with others.

When I finally became successful was when I stopped caring about whether or not my work would ever be accepted. I prayed about it and told God that I didnít care if I never was recognized or accepted by the art world and if He wanted me to be doing this medium would He just make it a little more bearable. After 20 years of this I was so tired of working 7 days a week 16 hours a day to just make enough money to get to the next show. You know what happened after that prayer? I started valuing my own work more and when I did that other people started to value it more. It seemed like all of a sudden the world was looking at it differently but it was actually my attitude that changed. I got back my old philosophy of not accepting other peopleís boundaries.

When Claude Monet began painting in the impressionistic style he was ridiculed by the public and by art critics. He didnít let that change his mind or squash his passion. If he had we probably never would have heard of him. I would like to challenge and encourage all of you to follow your passion and not to accept limits that others may try to put on you. Explore, discover, experiment and share what you learn with others. And it is never too late to start. Grandma Moses started painting when she was 76 and was ďdiscoveredĒ when she was 79. Her passion kept her going until she was 101.

Good role models are important. Seek them out. If your circumstances in life are difficult or even horrendous, good role models can inspire you and empower you to see beyond the present to a hopeful future. And in that future you will be the role model for others.

I want to thank you for the honor of being here. There are many, many people who worked very hard to put this ceremony together and I thank all of you. And I want to thank my husband Jeff, for his constant support and for never trying to hold me back.

Heís a smart man.

Oh, I have something for you. This is for the school. Itís a Kestrel which is a real brown and blue Sky Hawk.


Kathleen welcomes visitors to her studio and gallery by
appointment. Please call or email if you would like to stop by!

1-830-868-0335  info@kathleenmariestudio.com
 
                                                                  
Kathleen Marie ē 491 Wildwood Lane                                                                            © 2003-2012 Kathleen Marie Studio, Wildwood Studios.                        
Johnson City, TX 78636 ē 1-830-868-0335                                                                    All Rights Reserved