At the age of eight I started art lessons at a private school on the South side of Chicago.  During this period, I was introduced to watercolor and I developed ambitions to become an artist.  I finished my college career with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Illinois.  One of my favorite professors during this period was watercolorist Edward Betts.  Since that time I have taken many workshops with other famous American Watercolorists, some of who are realists as well as abstract painters.  They include Barbara Nechis, Edward Betts, Charles Reid, Frank Webb, Irving Shapiro, Joseph Bohler, Tom Hill, and Miles Batt.  My use of color, balance, and design comes from my many years of experiencing nature in Chicago, Alaska, and Florida.  These impressions allow me to create whimsical as well as intricate nature paintings.  Many of my representations have developed from constant doodling exercises and are then  enhanced by the use of vivid colors just as in nature.

Several years ago a musician friend and my brother Charles suggested that I do portraits of icons.  I have always loved music, dance, and nature.  Therefore, I found this idea appealing and pursued it.  Most of these portraits are musicians.  This new work of icon portrait paintings represents a combination of representational and abstract techniques.


Sandra Halpern-Stein