I developed a love for drawing young, but it fizzled out behind my dream of becoming an Olympian. I focused on my athletic career which landed me a full-scholarship to Texas, numerous sponsorships, and my ultimate goal of making it to the London Olympics in 2012.
Two years later my first marriage was ending with an intense custody battle that soon began immediately after that. I was fighting hard just to stay apart of my child's life and not lose my rights.
I became depressed and started pursuing my art during my athletic career. With a self-taught approach to painting, it became a release from my life - which ultimately, ending up saving my life.
I retired from being an Olympic athlete in 2016 and went full force into my passion for painting. I studied old masters techniques in drawing and painting at the Milan Art Institute in Phoenix, Arizona.
I have become transparent, vulnerable and open about my life's experiences, aiming to live a life purposefully doing what I desire to do everyday.
I’m often asked how I overcame such an intense situation. How did I ignore the negative things being said about me? How did I move forward? The way I did it was by my faith, my family and through my art. Art has the power to alter a person's feelings, change their life and and give purpose. My art not only changed my perspective but began changing others perspective as well.
I've accepted that in life you are either in the middle of a struggle, about to go into a struggle, or coming out of a struggle. Changing your perspective is the way you survive. Your perspective will either become your prison or your passport. It will either confine you to the way things are, or launch you into the way things are meant to be. So I welcome challenges because often our calling is located in our challenges, if we see it right.
You will never influence the world by trying to be like it. Step out and do something different. Take a leap and have faith. Things happen for a reason and there is a purpose behind everything. Just remember that you matter! Your dreams matter! Your purpose matters even more but you have to do the work to find your voice and tell your story.
Creative Entrepreneur, Artist