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Surreal Southwest ...
The Fanciful Fantasy of Artist Dorothy Drum

by Kimberly Renate

“My paintings are always an emotional response to their subject matter - the beauty of a flower, the vastness of open country, the loneliness of a deserted     building.”

Award-winning Dorothy Drum has many credits to her name - artist, designer, and instructor.

Born in Philadelphia, “my parents used to say that I was born with a pencil in my hand,” she said. There was never enough paper around the house for little Dorothy as she was growing up. She drew fervently. Even at the age of 6, this prolific prodigy created several masterpieces.

Drum’s talents did not go unnoticed. Two of her art teachers recognized her extraordinary talents and took her under their wings. At graduation, Drum received a four-year scholarship to the prestigious Philadelphia Art Museum’s School of Art.

Now a graduate of one the finest art schools in the country, Drum fell in love. Her husband and children came first, but Drum was passionate about art and did not waste her god-given   talent. For the next 15 years, she worked as a freelance artist,   selling her work and designs to more than 30 different companies. Her concepts and creations were admired all over the world.

Drum reached a point in her life when she felt it was time to step out into the world in a big way. She mustered up the courage and resources to open her own art gallery in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Her gallery flourished for the next six years, but one bitterly cold and nasty winter, Drum and her family decided that they would move to Florida. There, she taught watercolor for 14 years at the renowned Hilton Leech Studio in Sarasota.

Drum glows with talent and energy. She was voted the first President of the Florida Suncoast Watercolor Society. She also served on the boards of the Sarasota Art Association and the Venice Art League. That would be enough for most, but not for this dynamo. She was also a member of the Florida Watercolor Society, the Mid-West Watercolor Society and the National League of American Pen Women.

One year, Drum joined a group of artists and photographers on a trip to the American Southwest. Here, she fell in love with our vast majestic scenery, abundant natural wonders and indigenous American Indian culture. The Drums decided to build a home in Taos, New Mexico. They worked with the Bureau of Land Management and the University of Arizona, investigating artifacts on deserted pueblos unknown to the public.

All the while, Drum’s work was being shown in galleries throughout the Southwest and receiving rave reviews. The Drums moved to California and there, Drum’s artistic style went through a dramatic    metamorphosis. She started using vibrant, brilliant colored inks to    create non-representational paintings. She shared this new style with her fellow artists by organizing and teaching her technique at the Oceanside Museum School of Art.

Drum and her husband are now happily settled in Sedona. This November, she will be teaching a workshop at the Sedona Arts Center and she is scheduled to demonstrate her technique on October 10 and 26, at the Center for the Northern Arizona Watercolor Society, with a workshop in January 2002.

Drum has won 52 awards for her work in both local and national shows. She has sold more than 1,500 paintings, which she considers a great compliment.

“I have made all those people happy with something I have had great joy in creating. I can’t count how many of my greeting cards and prints have sold. I have been blessed with my talent and have left my small mark on the world by leaving some beauty behind me,” she said.

Dorothy Drum’s work is an absolute must see and is now on display seven days a week at The ARTeri Antique & Art Mall, 10 Bell Rock Plaza, Village of Oak Creek. You may call The ARTeri at 284-2555 for more information.

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