Art is my passion. Even as a child I knew I wanted to be an artist. As soon as I could pick up a pencil I began to draw. My first idol was Leonardo DaVinci and his work inspired me to want to become a Renaissance Woman. I have tried to succeed in that endeavor, to explore my interests in the arts, history and culture, as well as the sciences.
I am classically trained as a fine artist and portrait painter and have studied with private artists and at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. I graduated with honors from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia, with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Art Education. Following college, I spend a number of years teaching art to students, both in the private and public sectors.
My love of flowers, nature and the North American Indian culture have inspired me and are some of my favorite subjects to paint. My portraits, landscapes and still-life paintings hang in private collections throughout the United States.
About 33 years ago, I started restoring old photographs and it is now one of the services I provide through my company, Past Images By Anita. My fine arts training in painting and sculpture, along with my knowledge of restoration materials and techniques has made for a unique marriage of hobby and business.
I also restore old dolls. I began collecting dolls when I was a little girl, fortunate to have many relatives that traveled the world who brought me these gifts from the countries they had visited. My first collection was of antique bisque dolls, which I consider wonderful works of art. For my clients, I conserve and repair the dolls, dolls bodies and clothing as originally and historically as possible and even hand sew accessories from my collection of antique laces and materials whenever possible. My love of history and archaeology, along with my passion for collecting antiques, has helped me in identifying and appraising dolls. I have been recognized by my local historical societies as an expert in antique dolls and have lectured and written about the history of dolls, as well.
I have worked in graphics and web design to hone my skills in the constantly changing technical field of image and art restoration. I work on both MAC and PC platforms to perform what my client's call "my image wizardry." I've lectured on the preservation and conservation of old photos at historical societies, clubs and genealogy conferences.
Some of my recent work has been with Fort Delaware and with World War II veteran, author and lecturer Bill Fili in designing the cover for his book, Passage to Valhalla II, and his DVD cover for The Siege of Ploiesti. I was also commissioned to do several photo portrait memorials of Princess Catherine of Romania, which were presented to the Romanian Embassy in Washington, D.C. and Historical Museum in Bucharest, Romania.
Finally, I've always loved to read, admiring authors such as Edgar Allen Poe, O. Henry, and Isaac Asimov. I wrote poetry at twelve years old and advanced to short stories that I gave to friends to read for fun. Little did I know that these early forays into writing would be the precursor for my writing a book. Called Estate of Horror, it is a true story based on my terrifying experiences with the paranormal.
As an artist, an honest work comes through when it is based on what you know. The same is true with writing. The road to becoming an authentic writer is that you have to live the experience in order to write about it. So - I believe - I wasn't just compelled to write my book ... I was haunted to do it!