I was born in Schenectady, N.Y. to trained
fine artists. My dad was listed in Who's Who in American Art
in the 1950's. Both won several prizes for art. My father gave
one man shows and taught art classes on the side (an art director at
General Electric). So my parents were my inspiration. In later
life, my mother was a member of the Maine Women in the Arts and in her
seventies won a first prize for watercolor in a large show.
They had a little gallery in the front of their retirement home in
Kennebunkport, ME. I loved to go there. So I caught that
spirit of creativity early on and have been producing crafts, sewing
(sewed for a season for a designer on Mulberry Street in Boston but got
tired of cranking out the clothes) painting, sculpting, etc. just about all my life.
I'm self taught for the most part and in college studied art history as
part of my liberal arts education, but except for a few lessons at the
museum with my father where he taught classes on Saturdays, I had no other art training.
Through the years, living in Boston,
MA, Chicago, IL, Kankakee, IL, Wilmington, N.C., Memphis, TN and now
Mulberry, FL, I produced and sold a variety of crafts in various
mediums, including resin sculpture, wire sculpture, hand painted cloth
painted plates, porcelain jewelry, polymer
clay jewelry (sold to several stores), hand
painted shirts and more. Two of my favorite creations are
my sculpted painting and my first
wall hanging (65+ pieces of fabric) Creativity is a natural high
In 1997 I created my own web site
specializing in my dog art (added cats soon after) which soon had over 100 pages and for several
years I offered a wide variety of products that I affixed my printed out
designs to and then accent painted with dimensional paint. Then,
just about the time I was working myself to death, I discovered the
"print on demand" company Cafe Press who put my unique dog and cat
designs (including dogs and cats inserted into famous art) on over 85
products. What a blessing that turned out to be!
In 1999, I was discovered on the internet
by Susan Young who ended up featuring me as one of two artists in her book Decorative
Painting for Fun and Profit, (Prima Publishing, 2000). I
felt very encouraged to keep going for my dream of making a living on the
internet with my art. I have also signed a contract with a
publishing company to illustrate a children's book on dogs that will
hopefully be out in 2012.
I am married with two grown kids, four grand kids, a dog and two cats.
Reading, crafting, volunteering and friends take up any "spare"
Jean Batzell Fitzgerald
Mulberry, Florida 33860
All rights reserved 2011