Virginia Beach, VA
Norma Wilson was born in East Philadelphia, her mother, an Irish immigrant, her father a salesman. She grew up playing "wire-ball", riding her bike, and jumping rope, "double dutch". The most vivid memories she recalls about her childhood include her passion for rearranging the furniture in their small row house, changing the colors of her surroundings and always creating an atmosphere of some far away romantic setting. Her home was filled with classical music and the sounds of her Uncle, Val Doonican, who left Ireland for England and became an accomplished vocalist and television personality. Val, along with his sister, Norma's Aunt Una, paint lovely scenes of the Irish Countryside and English Cottages. All of this served as inspiration for a career filled with creativity. After graduating from The College of Notre Dame in Maryland, Norma married and spent the next twenty years as a Navy wife. She studied watercolor and drawing at the Swinburne School of Art in Rhode Island and took a course in Interior design. But, for the most part, she concentrated on raising three wonderful boys named Patrick, Sean, and Andrew. Fifteen years later she was encouraged by her friend and fellow artist, Susan Hecht to take a class with local artist, in fine art painting on furniture. She also studied pastel and acrylic. "I was afraid of the whole process, wanting to be able to paint well but sure I didn't have the ability." Her teacher was very patient and encouraged her to keep trying and remember the basics she had taught. " It was my second pastel-- a racoon coming out of the the colorful autumn leaves. It just seemed like a mess of color. I kept working and reacting to what I saw and all of a sudden the face began to emerge and I was hooked!" She has been painting ever since and loves it! Norma had finally found a home for all that creative energy and drive. "My paintings for me are a way to express the beauty and color that surrounds us and to celebrate the dance of light on everyday objects. When I am deep in the creative process, it becomes a sort of meditative experience where I am participating fully in the moment and allowing the universe to co-create and unfold in my work." Norma loves to spend her days painting in her home studio and displays her work in several galleries and establishments in the area. Numerous Tidewater shows and private collections around the United States showcase her work.