Today we’d like to introduce you to Devon Meyer.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Devon. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I have always wanted to be an artist but have taken a very circuitous path to become the artist and teacher that I am today. I got a degree in engineering so I could make a living and then a masters in sustainable development. Art never stopped being an integral part of my life, drawing, painting and taking classes. I quit work to raise my children and began painting more regularly. At first, I would paint insects because it was something that I could complete in a day. I then went on to paint native birds. I love hiking and the Sonoran Desert and that has been a continual theme and influence in my work. I use watercolor, oil, colored pencil and pastel. I am inspired to paint cactus, desert flowers, and birds as well as portraits! Currently, I teach at the Desert Botanical Gardens, Tucson Botanical Gardens, Scottsdale Artist’s School, Herberger Young Scholars Academy, the Hermosa Inn and privately. I am passionate about hiking and just trekked to Annapurna Base Camp in Nepal. Next week, I will be spending the night in the Grand Canyon. Art and Adventure continue to inspire me and all I do.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
No, it has not been a smooth road! As a young woman engineer, I was a minority in my field, then I transitioned into sustainable development but that was in the ’90s and there wasn’t a lot of commitment to change. I worked at a job and studied art in my free time. I would have shows here and there and got small art teaching jobs. I got plenty of rejections, once I submitted an illustrated journal of a trip around the world (I love to travel!) and got 100 rejections. Painting takes patience and a willingness to make many mistakes. I had a teacher who told me I had no talent! All these struggles only added to my determination to become a quality artist expressing meaningful ideas. Art provides an endless opportunity for growth.
Please tell us about your work.
I paint the Sonoran Desert plants, birds, animals and people. I recently had three pieces accepted for the Portrait Society competition. I love painting the riot of color found in desert blooms. I share my enthusiasm in my classes that include hummingbirds, pollinators, desert animals, butterflies, desert plants and flowers and also calligraphy!
Do you think there are structural or other barriers impeding the emergence of more female leaders?
Women are sometimes not taken as seriously as men in the art world but, in general, artists are accepted for their skills. There are many women artists that I admire and who have influenced me.
- Portrait commission $600
- Desert flowers oil paintings $350
- Private classes beginning at $75
- Website: devonmeyerillustration.com
- Phone: 480-678-2607
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: devonkearny