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Mary Segars

People used to tell me I was ‘good at art’, but I never believed them. While growing up in Blacksburg, VA, I often doodled around with pencil and sketchpad. At the College of William & Mary, I chose to major in biology, as I have an intense interest in nature and the mechanics of life. After working six years as a research technician at the University of Georgia Veterinary School, I married a veterinarian and moved to Hartsville, SC, where we lived for 13 years. Three children (boys) later, we moved to Beaufort, SC.

While in high school in the 1970′s, I taught myself how to do pastel portraits and began accepting commissions at the age of 16. I completed an estimated 250 pastel portraits over the next 22 years. While living in Athens, GA, I learned the technique of scratchboard, a medium which I love but rarely work in today. In Hartsville, I added pen & ink and colored pencil to my interests.

Until 1999, art was nothing more than a hobby for me, complimenting my life of part-time jobs, children, gardening, swimming, running, and school volunteering. After moving to Beaufort, I decided to pursue art in earnest. Teaching myself from a book at the library, I began dabbling in oil painting, my first fluid medium. This produced a virtual explosion in my life. Fairly overwhelmed by color theory at first, I began by using only primary colors, which still constitute my palette today. I had my first show after painting for only five months. To date, I have had five personal shows and have participated in a number of group shows. I have produced three large pieces of public art in Beaufort — two murals and a mosaic. I also enjoy teaching painting and drawing techniques to both adults and children, and I have, until recently, taught painting, mosaics, paper mache, and marionette-making in the public schools. I am listed on the SC Arts Commission roster for approved artist-in-residences.