In 2008, Mary Begau Wykes made the decision to pursue her lifelong dream of being an artist. Though she had always had a yearning to paint, prior to that point she had not had the courage to pursue her dream. She had, however, always made a point of including creative pursuits in her life. Other creative activities have included singing, songwriting, playing piano and guitar, quilting, crochet, knitting, macrame and spinning her own yarn. Thinking that she had 'missed the boat' by not pursuing formal education in art, Mary held back on pursuing her dream of painting for many years.
Prior to 2008, Mary had had one semester of high school art, and several months of an oil painting class in her late 20's, she continued to hold back until 2005 . . . the year when the magic began. That summer she attended a workshop in glass etching, and a watercolor workshop with Sue Scheewe. Discovering great joy in these activities, she signed up for watercolor classes with Fort Worth artist Ann Winchester, who encouraged her budding talent. Though a family crisis interrupted her art studies, in 2008 Mary made a serious commitment to make art a priority in her life. She returned to her studies with Ann Winchester, with whom she studied for a year and a half. Blossoming under Ann's tutelage, by 2010 Mary was feeling confident enough to begin creating original works and was soon accepting commissions and winning awards in local competitions.
For Mary, painting is meditation. In each piece she strives to embody the emotions she feels for her subject. She has continued to paint ever since 2008, in spite of serious vision challenges. In 2009 she was faced with two emergency surgeries for retinal detachment, followed by cataract surgery. 'First Dance' was created in 2009, prior to her cataract surgery, when she had only one-eyed vision. Though the vision in her left eye remains impaired, Mary continues to gain great pleasure from painting and drawing. She has found great encouragement from online studies with Daniel Edmondson.
Mary has always loved colors, to the point that she often thanks God for specific colors. It therefore seems appropriate that she is now a registered instructor for the Michael Wilcox School of Color. She is grateful for the insight into color mixing and color harmony that she has gained through the study of Michael's materials and enjoys sharing this information with others. She has also developed a passion for Zentangle, and became a certified Zentangle instructor in 2012.
Mary and her husband Tom, her high school sweetheart and husband of 49 years, have three grown children, and four grandchildren. In August 2017 they moved from Texas to Gardner, Kansas, where Mary looks forward to becoming part of the local art scene.
* First Place Award in 2015 Orange Arts Gallery First Annual Juried Art Competition
* Honorable Mention in 2014 SWA International Juried Art Show in Fort Worth, Texas
* Participation in the 2013 SWA International Juried Art Show in Fort Worth, Texas
* Participation in the 2012 Annual Juried Art Show of the Grand Prairie Arts Association
* Blue Ribbon in the 2011 Grand Prairie Arts Council Annual Juried Art Show
* Honorable Mention in the 2009 Members' Show of the Society of Watercolor Artists of Fort Worth, Texas
* Certified Zentangle Instructor
* Certified Instructor for the Michael Wilcox School of Color
Mary Beglau Wykes joined Fine Art America on August 15th, 2009.